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COMING NEXT IN CINEFANTASTIQUE 



The author. The director. The makeup artist. 

They have terrified millions. Now, these masters of modem horror 
have joined forces on a remarkable film called CREEPSHOW. 

The film, and their work, is the subject of our next, colorful issue. 
You wont want to miss it. Subscribe today. 



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VOL 12 NO 5/VOL 12 NO 6 

We’ve never had two cover stories 
before, mainly because our cover stories 
are so long and detailed that we only have 
space for one each issue But we felt that 
Ridley Scott’s BLADE RUNNER and the 
new STAR TREK movie. THE WRATH OF 
KHAN both deserved issue-length 
articles. Since the films are being 
released only a few weeks apart, featuring 
both on the cover of a double issue 
seemed the only timely, practical 
solution. 

Paul M. Sammon. who provided our 
exclusive multi-issue coverage on the 
filming of CONAN THE BARBARIAN, has 
kept close tabs on the production of 
BLADE RUNNER for the past 18 months. 
His article details how director Ridley 
Scott’s collaboration with effects master 
Douglas Trumbull has resulted in the 
most convincing evocation of a future 
world ever filmed. 

Kay Anderson’s article on STAR TREK: 
THE WRATH OF KHAN, however, came 
together at the virtual last minute. With 
the movie itself only beginning principal 
photography last November, and that 
under a shroud of secrecy. Anderson 
wasn’t permitted access to key creative 
people until filming wrapped in February. 
That made for a very harried three 
months of interviewing, writing and 
editing, including a trip by Anderson up 
to ILM. the film's special effects supplier 
in San Rafael. California. 

Normally, on such short notice, and 
with BLADE RUNNER already set as the 
subject of our July-August issue, we 
wouldn’t have gone to all the bother. But 
STAR TREK is special, to me. and to a lot 
of other fans who found among its weekly 
episodes some of the best science fiction 
ever filmed. 

Free of censorship and the budgetary 
strictures of television. STAR TREK has 
even greater potential as a series of 
feature films. STAR TREK II. filmed on a 
moderate budget by the television wing of 
Paramount (virtually assuring its 
commercial success), could be the start 
of something good, all over again. 

Frederick S. Clarke 


The magazine with a “Sense of Wonder.” 


J IT LY* AUGUST, 1982 



20 Blade Runner 

“There are certain moments/* explains 
director Ridley Scott, “where the back¬ 
ground can be as important as the 
actor.** That's frequently the case in 
this $15 million adaptation of Philip 
K. Dick’s classic novel, for which Scott 
created a frighteningly real tableau of 
urban life in the year 2019 A.D. 

Article by Paul A/. Sammon 



50 Star Trek-ii 

The inevitable questions are: will it be* 
better than the first film. And can 
direc tor Nic holas \lc*ye*r recapture the 
lost charm of the TV show? Everyone 
involved seems to think so, but only 
one thing’s for certain: it’s $.10 million 
cheaper than Star Trek-TMP . and 
what they s|x*nt ended up on screen. 

Article by Kay Anderson 



6 Videodrome 

The rough cut wowed the 
Universal exec s, but puzzled a 
preview audience in Boston, so 
David Cronenberg must re-edit 
until it comes out right. 

Article by Tim Lucas 

48 Revenge 
Of the Jedi 

An advance |x*ek at the latest 
chapter of the Star Wars saga. 
Portfolio by Ralph McQjuame 

79 Hawks’ 

The Thing 

This 1951 film is more than 
just the source material for 
John Carpenter’s big-budget 
remake. It was the first film 
about alien invaders from 
outer space, and still the best. 

Retrospect by George Turner 

_ Cover illustration by Roger Stine 

PUBLISHER AND EDITOR: Fredericks. Clarke. MANAGING EDITOR: Mic had Kaplan. 

BI'REAU.S: New \ork I).«\i<l Bartholomew. Dan .Srapprrotli: Los Angeles Jordan R Fox. Kyle Counts; London Mike Childs. Alart Jones; Paris Fredrru Albert Levy. 
CONTRIBUTORS: ka\ Anderson. Sir\rn Dntteo. Rolan Alan Glover. Judith I*. Harris, David J. Hogan. Bdl Kelley. Randall Larson. Tim Lucas, Ralph M< Quart ie. Ray 
Pride. Stephen Rebello. Paul M Sammon, George Turner. Boh Villard. Charlotte Wolter. Associate Editor:Carry Glaberson. Office Staff: Robrit Garcia. Li* Woodruff. 


4 Possession 

Producer Marie-Lame Reyre 
has discovered that bizarre 
French love stories with slimy 
monsters (by Carlo Rambaldi) 
area tough sell in America. 
Article by Frederic Albert Leiy 

18 Fire & Ice 

Ralph Bakshi shrugs off the 
doubts surrounding his latest 
animated feature. “You’ll see 
Frazetta. I assure you.” 

Article try Kyle Counts 

_ „ 76 Something 
' Wicked This 
Way Comes 

It’s another attempt by Disney 
to make an adult film. The 
good news: director Jack 
Clayton isn’t intimidated by 
the ghost of Uncle Walt. 
Article by Stephen Rehello 

Page 79 


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7) In Rohcti tih and Donna I an as Photo o! Matun Rosin (page Hi In |oidan R hn Ridleys die illustration (page Llli In Rolieti l.righion 

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1 









Polish and difficult to see in America? 

Andrez Zulwalski’s minor masterpiece, 
featuring Carlo Rambaldi’s latest creation. 

A R I I C UE B V FR i! I) HR 11' K A 1 B F R I I E V V 


I I premiered at Guntur 
to rave reviews and 
went on i<> capture the 
grand prize ( l hr C .olden 
Asteroid) at the Trieste Sci¬ 
ence Fiction Film Awards. 

It has been sold to markets 
all over Europe, but you 
won’t find it playing in 
American theaters. At least, 
not yet 

t he film is POSSES¬ 
SION [ I l:4:7],a taleof hor¬ 
ror, love, religion and the 
occult, starring Sam Neill 
and Isabelle Adjani. Alter 
months of frustrating ne¬ 
gotiations. the French- 
West German co-produc¬ 
tion has still not l>een pic ked up for 
domestic distribution. 

One reason for the delay might In* 
the* reluctance of producer Marie- 
Laure Reyrc and Polish film director 
Andrez Zulawski to tamper with the 
finished print. “This film must lx* 
kindled with care,” Reyre explained. 
“This is no film for a major coin- 
pany. We will accept some changes 
for the American version (the film is 
122 minutes long), but we won’t let 
anylxxly butcher it with re-editing. 
What we need is somehcxlv to fall in 

love with r< KSESSION" 

Zulawski has reason to be sensitive 
about othet |x*ople tinkei mg with his 
work—while still working in Poland 
rnanx of his films were censored or 
sc uttled for |x»litical reasons. In 1978, 
In began to shoot III! SILVER 
GLOBE, a big-budget sc ienceficlion 
film about a colony on the moon, 
based on a novel written by hisgiarul- 
father With the* film nearly com¬ 
plete. a new minister of film produc¬ 
tion (the* fifth since the photography 
began) halted shooting and confis¬ 
cated the existing footage, c laiming 
the story was “subversive.” 

Ilis previous film. IMF DEVIL, 
had also been sccpiestcred. and two 
books he had written were l>annc*d for 
|x>litiral reasons. 

So when he dc*c ided to make POS¬ 
SESSION. Zulawski sought artistic 
refuge with the help of Canadian tax- 
shelter funds, but the Canadian offi¬ 
cials in charge insisted on c ertainc ast- 
ing requirements. Thcdirec tor. who 
wrote the film with Neill and Adjani 
in mind. refusc*d. 

Mranwhile. Reyre, who had worked 
with Z.cdawski on another aboitc*cl 
film project (the story, set in Poland 
in 1944. was rejec ted by the Polish 
government), suggested that they 
team up again, and Ixuight the rights 
to POSSESSION in May. 1979. 

The film was shot on the streets of 
West Berlin on a budget of $2 million, 
with | nisi prod union work handlc*d 
in Paris. Since POSSESSION'S pre¬ 
miere. Reyre has been quietly nego- 
iating with (liter American distribu¬ 
tors. but the intricacies of domestic 
distribution have made her proceed 
with caution. “America is something 
different!” she said. 

Par t of Reyre's problem is trying to 
sell a French film that was shot in 
English. She disc overed that art hous¬ 
e's—the usual distribution route for 
I*tench films—prefer films shot in 
French with English subtitles. And 
mainstream distributors don’t like 
handling “foreign" films, although 


the leads play their roles with almost 
no accents at all. 

Complicating matters further, 
Reyre has refused to sell POSSES¬ 
SION as a horror film, despite the 
obvious commercial advantages. 
According to Reyre, the film is the 
story of a c otiple torn a|xirt bee ausc*of 
the* Adjani’s failure in her profession, 
as a wife and as a mother. “There is a 
monster, of course," Reyre* said, “but 
it’sonly a p.m of thestory. The horror 
would probably have lx*en much 
stronger if we didn't show the monster. 

In tlx* film. Adjani ( ITIE TEN¬ 


ANT) is a housewife who carries on 
relationships with her husband, a 
lover, and a glaucous creature she 
herself gave birth to in a West Beilin 
subway station. So much for the 
genre element. New Zealand actoi 
Sam Neill (SLEEPING DOGS.THE 
FINAL CONFLICT)* is her hus¬ 
band. I le hire's two pi ivate deiee lives 
to find out why his wife is acting 
strangely, and they die trying to find 
out. Neill later kills Adjani’s lover 
and finally confronts the monster, 
but is himself eventually cut down by 
police, along with Adjani, as the 


monster esc a|x*s. 

Flic* I km si itself was cre¬ 
ated and o|x*rated by (iarlo 
Ramlxildi. who accepted 
the assignment for a re¬ 
duced fee* providing Zu- 
lawski and Reyre* kept his 
exact pric c* a secret. Zulaw¬ 
ski had first approached 
surrealist II. R. Giger to 
create the monster, and 
Giger recommended Ram- 
baldi. who was just finish¬ 
ing work on I HE HAND. 
One clay after Ramhaldi 
received the script, he 
accepted the* assignment, 
and Zulawski then shuttled 
between Los Angeles and 
Beilin as the*design took shape*. 

Ramhaldi liegan wor k in earnest in 
July, 1980, and two months later 
arrived in Berlin ready to go—his 
equipment packed in five coffins. He 
sc Kin discovered he'd have* to train 
most of thee tew. as few hac!anyc*x|x*- 
Hence with such makeup effects. 

Rcytc insists that the fantastic ele¬ 
ments in POSSESSION cannot Ik* 
separated from realism; in that 
regard, she compared the film to 
FAHRENHEIT 451. Another sim¬ 
ilarity with the* I9HB Francois Truf¬ 
faut lilm is motif of doubles: at the 
1*1x1 of POSSESSION. Adjani playsa 
dual role as a schoolteacher; Neill 
tric*s to find, mother women, a replica 
of his wife; and. most importantly, 
Adjani nic*s to produce a replica of 
hei husband in the monster she gave 
birth to. “Many |x*ople think that the 
seven ’almosts* Adjani says while 
making love to the monster |x*rtain to 
her sexual fufilhnent," said Reyre*. 
“But she* says ’almost* because she is 
pleased that her creature gradually 
resembles Neill. When you really 
love a |x*rson. somehow you always 
return to this person.*’ 

Stylistically* POSSESSION is 
punctuated by a deep blue tint that 
invades nearly every scene. “You find 
a ty|x* of blue* every where in Berlin 
streets.” said Reyie. “Tolx*morepre- 
c isc*. Bei Ini is a mixture of giecu and 
yellow—yellow lx*causc* of its road 
signs, green because* of the* pate lies of 
forest it was built on. Those two 
colors mix in your mind toproducea 
very s|x*c ial shade of blue*. 

“Admittedly, the bine you see on 
the* screen is somewhat exaggerated.” 
Reyre added. “It’s our common 
ac hievement. In lac t. westopixtl pro¬ 
cessing our film at the* Berlin labs 
Irecause there was no translator s|x*- 
ciali/ed enough to explain what 
exact nuances we wanted. Twelve 
c oloi -c orrec ting sessions wete iimlt d 
to obtain the* POSSESSION blue.” 

Reyre was satisfied with her assexi- 
ation with Zulawski. despite some 
tensions in the* editing room. In 
France, the final cut belongs to the 
direc tor. “In Ame rica.” Reyre laughed, 
“things are much simpler, since* the 
producer dec ides!” 

Still. Reyte wouldn't have had it 
any other way. “If I make* a film with 
Zulawski it's Imc ausc I lesjxTi his tal¬ 
ent and his excesses," Reyre said. “If I 
wanted to do it my way. I’d hire a 
yes-man fot a director. There may 
have Ikvii ter isions between Zulawski 
and me. but I know lie* is a true profes¬ 
sional. not a kamikaze.” □ 



Opposite page: Writer-director Andrez Zulawski uses a syringe and his fingers to 
smear “blood” on the skin of the amorous monster featured in POSSESSION. The 
face and body of the monster are vague, but as the film progresses. Isabelle Adjani 
shapes it to resemble her husband, played by Sam Neill. Above: Makeup designer 
Carlo Rambaldi pieces together the unpainted skin lor one of the creatures. A 
second full-size puppet, painted and ready for filming, waits in the background. 


5 






















After screening a rough cut in Boston, 
Cronenberg discovers he must plug up his plot holes. 


"I’m simply doing what any writer 
does—rewriting and reshaping my 
material until it’s done. The only 
difference is that as a director, this 
usually-private creative struggle 
is being performed in public.” 


By Tim L ucas _ 

Patience is a virtue th.ii should I* 
c ultivated. And David Cronenberg is 
hoping his Ians will have the |>atienee 
to wail an additional live months to 
see his latest opus, VIDEC )I)R< )ME. 
Despite handsome two-jrage maga¬ 
zine spreads advertising an Oc tober I 
release. Universal has posqxmed the 
delnii ol (he him to Mart h. I‘MW. 

Cronenberg test-screened VIDEO¬ 
DROME m Boston in mid-April.and 

ilie* generally-favorable audience 
reac lion enabled him to see Iris work 
from a fresh perspective. "I was sur¬ 
prised to find that people's compre¬ 
hension of the plot was not what I 
wanted it to be,” said Cronenberg. 
“For example, lor ihelnsi three-quar¬ 
ters of the movie, no one understood 
that Max Renn [James Woods) ran a 
c able- rv station.” 

Interestingly, when Cronenberg 
screened the film lor Universal execu¬ 
tives. response was muc h moreenthu- 
siastic. “It was probably the most suc¬ 
cessful preview screening I've ever 
had," Cronenberg reported. “The 
feeling in the screening room, after¬ 
ward. was actually giddy.” 

Why the difference? Cronenberg 
had deleted several scenes from the 
him (for "stiuc tural reasons”) whic h 
contained important plot details. 
The audience at Universal apparently 
knew enough about the film in 
advance to (ill in the* ga|>s; the audi¬ 
ence in Boston, which knew nothing 
ol the plot, was confused. ”lt doesn’t 
hurt me to put the scenes back in," the 
director explained. "It’s just that the 
film was lighter without them. But it 


was also less comprehensible." 

Although postproduc lion shoot¬ 
ing officially wrapped March 12. 
Debbie Harry returned to Toronto 
for a single day of work in late May. 
Following this, Cronenberg began to 
rec ui the film; a second preview was 
scheduled for sometime in June. 
"We'll have finished prints in Octo¬ 
ber.” Cronenberg said, "hut Univer¬ 
sal wanted at least two months in 
advance of release to do preview 
screenings of tlreii own to find the 
audience at which to direct then 
advertising. After you’re bumped 
from the October slot, you’re up 
against Christmas films, and VIDEO- 
DKOMF is not a Christmas pic true. 
That takc*s us to January, and Univer¬ 
sal may have that totally bunked for 
all I know. That may Ik* why they’re 
talking Marc h. Or maybe*, they’re just 
being cautious in case—Oml for¬ 
bid—this next lest screening shows 
that what I think is going to work 
dcK'sn’t work.” 

If that’s the case*. Cronenberg may 
have to rethink the film once again— 
|xirt of his continual process of re¬ 
writing and reconceptualizing that 


continued throughout filming and 
into editing. "I’m simply doing what 
any wr iter d<x*s—reshaping my mate¬ 
rial until it’s done—with the added 
difference that, as a director, this 
usually-private creative struggle is 
iK'ing |m-i burned in public.” 

Cronenberg’s fine tuning has 
ap|xirently diminished Debbie I lai- 
ry’s muc h-public ized role as |>op psy¬ 
chologist Nicki Brand. But Cronen¬ 
berg rejected any conjec ture that the 
cuts were prompted by Harry’s inex¬ 
perience. "I haven’t done anything 
with her performance that I haven’t 
clone with anyone else’s. including 
Wood's," he said. "I’m looking for 
the* lx*st takc*s. and creating the best 
film possible from the pieces we have. 
People are thinking I’m c utting Deb¬ 
bie down, but. whenever I throwouta 
scene with her. I’m throwing out one 
with Jimmy [W<mkIs|. who’s in every 
scene, and other actors.” 

Following the conclusion of prin¬ 
cipal photography on Christmas 
Eve, Cronenberg sc heduled a week of 
post product ion filming in March, 
devoted primarily to s|x*cial effects 
inserts created by Rick Baker's EFX 


Inc.. Flank (iarere. and video e oordi- 
nators Mic hael I .clinic k and I a*e \\ il- 
son. Also inc luded was some cover 
shooting, for which James Woods 
returned lor three days work. 

However, several of Lennic k’s and 
Wilson’s effects—inc hiding the* sur¬ 
facing of a fully o|x*rating television 
set from the* soapy waters of Max 
Reim s bathtub—weren't filmed or 
won't make it to the screen. la*nnick 
and Wilson had planned the bathtub 
sequence thoroughly, to the extent of 
ac tually developing a waterproof TV 
monitor that wouldn't elec ucx utean 
actor, but the scene was dropped 
because it no longer conformed to the 
ever-flue mating narrative. 

’I realized, as Ron (Sanders) and I 
were cutting the film, that the bath¬ 
tub scene would lx* redundant." Cro¬ 
nenberg explained. ‘‘Though it 
would have had some wonderful 
effects, the action I had written for the 
video image in that scene had been 
written into a later scene at the 
Cathode Ray Mission (a video haven 
for derelicts). The bathtub scene 
would have been a false* turning 
point, so it went—and theeffectswith 
it.” 

Also jettisoned were certain mo¬ 
ments when Debbie Harry’s bexiy 
would "twitch video”—take on the 
snowy, lineil texture of a TV pic lure 
tube—bee a use Cronenberg had trou¬ 
ble incorporating these effects into 
the re st of the film. “They didn’t seem 
to work,’’ he explained. "They 
looked like something from another 
movie. I thought they were flat when 
compared to the other effects, whic h 
are very realistic and three-dimen- 




Below left: Canadian special effects technician Frank Carere poses with his specially-modified keyboard, designed to control air bladders for one of Rick Baker s u ™* ual 
makeup effects. Below center (l-r) David Cronenberg, assistant cameraman Carl Harvey. Les Carlson and James Woods prepare lo film a scene on a mock-up of the 
Spectacular Optical banquet set during postproduction photography in Toronto. Below right Cronenberg takes off his glasses to check a camera set-up. 





































David Cronenberg points to the spot where he wants a bullet to hit Barry Convex (Les Carlson, in background), the evil owner ol the Spectacular Optical company 


sional." 

Hit* main hotly of CCronenberg's 
effet ts work—said tobestariling—re¬ 
mains under wraps until the film's 
release. Makeup ef fee ts designer Rit k 
Baker considers his work (or CCronen¬ 
berg among the best lie's ever done. 
Bui he emphasized that, although 
VIDEOD ROME’S makeup effec ts 
tredii will read only fits name, the 
credit is more formality than truth. 

"I wanted the t retlit to read ‘EFX 
Inc.’ with a list of our names (Steve 
Johnson. Tom I (ester, Shawn Me En- 
roe. Bill Sturgeon, and Elaine Baker] 
underneath." Baker said, ‘ bin we 


weren’t allowed todothat. Ithastodo 
with Canadian tax laws, the fac t that 
we’re Americans, and because a cer¬ 
tain amount of money couldn't lx* 
spent on certain itemsfroman Ameri¬ 
can crew. If you ask me, it'sa bunc h of 
bullshit." 

Baket, who began work on GREY- 
SIOKE just one day after complet¬ 
ing work in Toronto (see page9). said 
lie* was happy with the* working rela¬ 
tionship be* and (Cronenberg estab¬ 
lished. ”1 bad wanted to work with 
David because* I think he's one of the 
best directors working in the genre." 
Baker said. “I knew it would lx* fun 


because he’s my age and a nice, mel¬ 
low kind of person. But what im¬ 
pressed me most about David was 
that he could remain so calm. 

"During principal photography," 
Baker continued, "the schedule was 
changing every day. We would lx* 
told to have a certain thing ready for 
that day’s shooting and they'd end up 
shooting another thing we didn’t 
have finished. It got c razy sometimes. 
(Tie script wasn't finished on the last 
day of shooting; David changed the 
last scene, and they only got one shot 
that whole day. But David was calm 
through the w hole thing!" 

Though he remained cool and 
calm on the set, Cronenberg was 
recently angered by an artic le about 
VIDEODROME that was published 
in Mediascrne Prcvue. The article, 
wTitten by Stephen Zoller, revealed 
some of the film's most closely 
guarded secrets. In addition, the arti- 
ele was also spic ed with nasty remarks 
concerning some of the members of 
the crew. 

"Aside from saying some things 
that weren't true," (Cronenberg said 
of theartic le. "like how the (Canadian 
effects crew was incompetent, and 
how I sup|x>sedly shot two dozen 
lake's of Debbie Harry’s nude scene, I 
felt it was particularly dishonest 
because* it suggested that this guy 
[/oiler] was on the set. and that he 
heard some of these things directly. 
Also, he seemed to suggest that be saw 
some footage, which is not true. In 
general, it was a betrayal; he knew 


about the secrecy surrounding the 
film, he mentions it. and he still 
printed it. That’s what gives journal¬ 
ists a bad name." 

However, not everything Cronen¬ 
berg reads or hears about his career is 
so stinging. More typical are thee om- 
ments of director Martin Scorsese, 
who talked about (Cronenberg while 
appearing on NBC-TV’s LATE 
NIGHT WITH DAVID LE H ER¬ 
MAN last February. "His horror 
films are so gocxl." Scorsese said, "I 
can only see them once!. 

As Cronenberg guides VIDEO¬ 
DROME through its final editing 
and mixing phases, bis next film. 
TWINS, is starting to take shape. 
Based on the 1977 best-selling novel 
by Bari Wocxl and Jack Geasland, 
and on "Dead Ringers." a 1971 
Esquire article that detailed the case* 
history on which the novel was dis¬ 
cretely based, the film is being 
scripted by Norman Snider, a colum¬ 
nist for the Ontario newspaper The 
Globe and Mail. 

"Rather than doing a cut-arid- 
dried adaptation." Cronenberg ex¬ 
plained. "I'm approaching it w'ith 
the attitude that I’ve had a surrealistic 
nightmare about these twin sisters, 
both gynecologists, whose lives 
ended in suicide." Due to the recent 
dissolution of Filmplan, the pro¬ 
ducer of his last few films, TWINS 
w ill lx* prcxluced bv (Carol Baum and 
Jcx- Roth (AMERICATHON), with 
Silvo l abel (BEAS ( MASTER) serv¬ 
ing as executive prcxlurer. □ 


Video coordinator Michael Lennick poses on the set of the bootleg video workshop 
where the Videodrome signal is intercepted. The set. actually a room in an old. 
abandoned underwear factory, was designed and built by Lennick s video crew. 



PHOTOS DONNA LUCAS & ROBERT UTH 


7 

















Snifter, a pedigreed fox-terrier (foreground) waits for 
Ralph, a lab-bred labrador, after escaping from an 
English research lab. The handsomely-animated film 
was produced by Martin Rosen (inset left), shown 
posing with statuettes of the film’s main characters. 


After a rather lengthy produc tion 
span—though |H*rha|is not all that 
long by the standards of cpiality ani¬ 
mation—Martin Rosen’s Ne|ienthe 
Productions has finally de livered a 
finished print of III I*. PLAGUE 
DOGS to Embassy Pictures. The ani¬ 
mated feature, based on Richard 
Adams’ best-selling novel, is tenta¬ 
tively slated for October release*. 

The film is Rosen's followup to 
\VA IT RSI IIP IX >\VN (l‘>78>. act iti- 
callv-acc laiuted and financ tally suc¬ 
cessful adaptation of another lx*si- 
selling Ri< hard Adams novel. 

the PLAGUE DOGS was origi¬ 
nally sc heduled for release rnOc t«>I k*i 
of /W/. hut production delays forced 
Embassy to push liack the* release*, 
l ire film has Ixin itt active ptoduc- 
t ic m sine e I he sum met c >1 IU80. fc >1 lc nv- 
irrg a year of prcprcxluctinn chores: 
sc tiptitrg. story boarding and researc h- 
irrg the film’s geographical settings. 

We haven't hit any snags itt pro- 
due lion.” explained Rosen, an Amer¬ 
ican producer (WOMEN IN I.O\ E) 
who has worked itt England for most 
ol his career. It’s just Ixett extraordi¬ 
narily difficult tc» create the charac¬ 
ters within thequality range we must 
have. We had assumed a certain time 
frame on the Irasis ol WA 1 ERSI IIP 
DOWN, hut the reality has proved to 
lie otherwise.” 

Although relying on many of the 
same English animators who worked 
on his previous animated fe*ature. 
Rosen based the $b million produc¬ 
tion inSan Eiane ist o. Veleian anima¬ 
tor Phil Duncan retired after his stint 
on WA EERSI IIP DOWN, but ani¬ 
mation director lony Guy. layout 
artists Gordon Harrison and Peter 
Set*, and 20 other members of the 


Ne|x*nthe animation team moved to 
the Bay area to work on the film. 

The story concerns a |x*digreed Ic >x- 
terrier. Snitter. who has iH-en con¬ 
signed to a reseaic h lab following the 
dc*alh of his ownci in a car accident. 
Snitter. who regards men as basic ally 
gcxxl. meets Ralph, a lab-bred labia- 
doi who knows men only as a source* 
of terror and agony. Somehow, they 
manage to e*sca|x* horn the* lab—lo¬ 
cated in the wild I .akc Disti ic t north 
of England—alter which the\ must 
manage to survive on tlrcii own. 
Irel|xd h\ an alliance with a lox. 
Meanwhile, it’s discoverc*d that the 
lab was conducting unauthori/cd 
biological research, and a massive 
hunt fc>i the- dogs is launched. I he 
ohjec t. ol course, is their destine lion. 

Glearly. as with WAIERSIIIP 
DOWN, this is no foray inter cute 
Disney terrain. Eot that matter, the 
film hardly serins to proffer inuchol 


the respite found in WAIERSIIIP 
IX )W\”s ge ntler. efunning moments. 
Rosen, wire* says lie prefers to set out 
in a new direction with each of his 
films, pi utilised a “tough, dramatic. 
hard-hitting story, with some rnglit- 
niare qualities to it.” It’s a statement 
\er\ nine h in line with Rosen sintent 
to use animation as a iegul.ii stoiy- 
telling medium, without c oncessions 
to the "family” audience to which 
must animation has Ixrn direc tc-d. 

. Rosen wants his use of animation 
to reflect the verisimilitude, nuance* 
and realistic charac ter movements ol 
live action, without icsortiug to the 
slaudaid exaggerated features and 
movements ol i\pic al cartoon an ima- 
tion. Large, wide eyes and ruhlxiy 
lac es are out. Subtle details and skill¬ 
ful action —by the animators and 
.ic tors doing the voie es—arc* in. 

Wliilec cmiparisons with WA I ER- 
Sl IIP IX >WN arc inevitable. Rosen is 


cpiic k to add that the atiimalion will 
stand on its own. Eor one thing. I HE 
PLACil’E DCX.S will not have thr¬ 
eat lici film's pastel color schemes, 
influenced h\ the English \\ alerco¬ 
lor scliool. ’* 1 he story is set in more 
nigged country.' Rosen said. Its 
not the soli.iiadinon.il I nglishcoun- 
uyside. Ill is setting lias mouniains. 
c 1111 c kly-flowing stieams. lakes. snow 
and fog—quite* a harder look.” 

Pile pursuing humans will lx* a 
constant, but mostly uti.srm presence 
in the film. According to Rosen, the 
hard-won sus|x*nsion ol dislx-lic*f for 
animals who converse with each 
other and have realistic. human-like 
|x*isoua!iiies would Ire shattered by 
jiixta|xrsing realistic human Ireings 
who also s|x*ak and mieiact. I lien, 
too. there is the matter ol the extreme 
lime and exfierisc* it would take to 
animate |xople pro|x*rly. 

’ I here’s not one foot ol roto- 
scoped material in the film.” Rosen 
noted. "Whenever you sera human— 
unlc-ss it’s clone exquisitely well—it 
negates all the emotional content 
you’ve achieved up to that point. 
You’re trying to get the audience to 
Ix'lievc* they’re in a different kind of a 
wor Id. but the minute they see a |x*t- 
son. they think. Wait a minute! 
Humans aren’t painted that way. 
They don’t move like that.’ And to 
me. a rotosco|xd loimai onl\ exacer- 
Ixites the problem.” 

Although production delays have 
certainly increased the film’s cost, 
Rosen gave little thought to c utting 
corners to deliver the* final print any 
soonei. II it has to end up costing 
more. I can’t not s|x*nd the money," 
In*explained. "There's no alternative* 
to doing it the* right way.” O 


Two scenes Irom THE PLAGUE DOGS, due lor release this lad. Lelt: A wily lox watches Ihe two title characters approach. The 
LhV-te.Tr«J foreground typical ol producer Marlin Rosen s penchant lor realistic detail. Right: Ralph wa.ches over Sn.lter 
as he sleeps. The highly-detailed animation style contributed to the one-year delay in the Him s scheduled release^ 


1 sj| 




jt: 




E 






The Plague Dogs 

From the creator of Water ship Down 
comes a $6 million foray into the realm 
of classically-animated talking animals. 


Bv Jordan R. Fox 












COMING 


Makeup Oscar: baker wins first award in new academy category 


Beginning with the 1981 Oscars, 
the Academy of Motion Picture 
Arts and Sciences created a separate 
Oscar award category lot makeup 
effects. It is the first continuing cate- 
gory established since 19-18. The 
first winner, in ceremonies held in 
April, was Rick Baker for his work 
on AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN 
LONDON. In hisacccptances|xx*ch. 
Baker warmly cited his mentor. 
Dick Smith (whose* own work on 
SCANNERS was eligible, hut 
overlooked). 

Smith and other veteran makeup 
artists have fought for years to 
achieve Oscar recognition for the 
Society of Makeup Artists. The 
situation came to a head last year, 
when Chi istopher Tucker's remark¬ 
able work in THE ELEPHANT 


MAN. a film that received high 
praise, went offic rails unnoticed. 

Op|M>sition to the makeupaward 
came from all quarters, most nota¬ 
bly. national film critics Roger 
Ebert and GeneSiskel. In an Oscai 
edition of their PBS television show 
SNEAK PREVIEWS, they chris¬ 
tened the award “Dog ol the Week” 
and attacked it as glorifying gory 
horror films. However, they failed 
to note that one of the initial 
award's two nominees. Starr Win¬ 
ston. was nominated for his non¬ 
frightening. non-gory c haracter 
makeup for HEAR 1 BEEPS. 

To win an Oscar, the nominees 
must first survive the diffic ult nom¬ 
inating procedure. The makeup 
nominees are overseen by acommit- 
tce of makeup men and two Acad¬ 


emy governors. They form a second 
committee composed of makeup 
artists, hairstylists, cameramen and 
other “experts'* to compile a list of 
eligible pictures. The list is sent to 
active makeup artists and hairstyl¬ 
ists to vote for up to five nominees. 
From the seven highest scoring 
movies, the first committee chooses 
up to three nominees who actually 
coni|x*te for the Oscar hv vote from 
the union's full membership (in¬ 
cluding inactive members). 

Before the institution of the con¬ 
tinuing category for makeup, orrly 
special Oscars were dolled out— 
with iro competition—to William 
Tuttle in 1964 for 7 FACES OF DR. 

I AO and to John Chambers in 1968 
for PLANE EOF THE APES. 

David Bartholomnv 



Rick Baker with presenters Vincent 
Price and Kim Hunter, who played the 
ape Zira in PLANET OF THE APES. 


Deathwatch 

Bertrand Tai>er?iier shuns 
space spectaculars for a 
“ Dickensian ” approach 
to science fiction films. 

Bv Frederic Albert Levy 

After two years of searching for an Ameri¬ 
can distributor. DEATHWATCH will 
finally Ik* released in the States l>\ Quartet 
Films and Films Inc . Ironically, the* Franco- 
German co-produc lion (shot entirely in Eng¬ 
lish) was coveted hy so many distributors that 
it bee a me entangled in a legal imbroglio that, 
until recently, barred its distribution. 

The subject of this thoughtful work hy 
director Bertrand la vernier is Death 
as Pornography. In a futuristic so- 
c iety. the |x*ople have become so an- 
estheti/cd to death that is has become 
a form of entertainment televised on a 
show culled “Deathwatch.'' Rotny 
Schneider (LAST I ANGOIN PARIS) 
plays Katherine Mortenhoe. a wo¬ 
man with three weeks to live*. Vin- 
c ent Fen inian (I tarry Dean Stanton), 
the evil producer of “Deathwatch." 
approaches Schneider to ap|x*ar on 
the* seiic*s. She lakes his money. Inn 
runs away instead, wanting to die* 
alone* away from prving cameras. 

Little does she* know th.it Koddie 
(Harvey* Keitel), thefriendly holm she 
meets the* next day. is Ferriman's 
accomplice. Koddie has a camera 
implanted in his head that videotapes 
whatever he sees for the* show's aueli- 
ence. Unfortunately, the camera 
makes it im|x>ssible for him to sleep. 

Katherirre*discovers Rodelic's identity 
and relx*ls at In mg exploited. She* 
kills he*rsc*lf a week before he*r sched¬ 
uled death, frustrating audience 
expec tations. I he* two c haracters. 
Kalhc*rine and Koddie. become for 
Tavernier jioetic image's—the* woman 
whose revolt against sex iety causes 
her to die* and the man who cannot 
sleep Im*c a use his entire life* is alrsc >t lied 


"They pre*fe*r to blow millions, sometimes no/ 
to have any film. So DEATHWATCH was 
made as a Franco-German co-produc lion, on 
a very reasonable* budget—it didn't exceed 
2..1 million dollars." Ae cording to Tavernier, 
after string DFA I11 WA TCH a Warner Bios 
e*xec ut ive said: “Did we really refuse that film. 
that script? I can t understand that. You s|x*nt 
for your whole* film what we s|>ent on just 
the se reenplay of 111F FLE( TRIG I If >RSE- 
MAN." 

DFA I IIWA I Cl I is a se ience-fic lion film, 
hut it is what Tavernier calls “emotional” 
science fiction. The characters, their feelings, 
the* c hole e*s they make*, and the tc'xiurc’of their 
lives ate all more* im|x>rtant the n the tec hnol- 
ogy that surrounds them. All references in the 
future are kept muted and firmly in the* 
h.u kglotmel. 

"Very often in science* fiction films," 
Tavernier said, “characters make other peo¬ 
ple awareof the* usefulness or the weirdness of 
some* kind of fiitiuisiie paraphernalia. 

I lungs that foi thee h.u.ic ters should 
lx* just second nature. In DFA I II- 
WA I (ill however, somebexly speaks 
of a marker-card usable on Satur¬ 
days only; a character com merits on 
(In* pi ice* of hrcxcoli; in the* flea 
market everything is written in 
English and Arabic: and every husdis- 
plays a |x»stei say mg Reeve leyour wa¬ 
ter.’ I his is just normal l>ac kgtound. 
nolxxly commentse>n it. I'he*future*is 
not presented as a dazzling dream of 
progress. In fae 1.1 pie keel Glasgow for 
the location shooting because it fit¬ 
ted exactly into im approach te> sci¬ 
ence lie lion. I w'antedase iencefic tion 
film with nomexlern bindings, a Vic¬ 
torian. Die kensian sc ience lie lion." 

With it’s emphasis one hatac teriza- 
tion and sex iul commentary. DFA 1 II 
WA TCH is certainly bucking the 
trend in a genie scr on making huge 
s|x*c tae ill.it films about the future. 
But Tavernier feels his film is defi¬ 
nitely science* fiction. “The New 
Wave writers in science fiction are 
essentially sex ial." he said. “Spinrad. 
Baton. Btiinncr have expressed a 
vie ial eonv ience; I deelic alcd my film 
to Jacques Tourneur. Per Imps. I 
should have dedicated it to George 
Orwell, as well." □ 



Bertrand Tavernier directs Harvey Keitel and Romy Schneider. 


hat he sees. 

>FA I'll WATCH is not about 
ision the way NE. TWORKwas." 
Tavernier. “It is about telev ision 
the ethics of show business, 
11 he c uncut invasion of privacy, 
iision is a brain crusher. (her¬ 
niation. over-dramatization just 
•s everything flat. No event can 
non* than a couple of weeks oil 
No event can lx* an enduring 
*ss. This really frightens me." 
u script lot DEATHWATCH 
vlinen hv DavidRavfield(JERF 
II JOHNSON, THREE DAYS 
THE CONDOR) from a David 
pton novel The l Unsleeping Eye. 
* main ideas are Compton's," 
Tavernier, “but I gave them a 
malic approach. The book, 
uisly, had been written hy a 
r who did not think as a film- 
r. Of course*. I added my own 
erns. Among other things, 
I HWATCH is about the ethics 
mmaking and the* inability of 
Ic* to communic ate." 
vernier is well known in blui¬ 
ng c ire les not just as a film- 
r. hut alsoasarritic. Hisanalyti- 


cal work Trentr.tn.ssrCinerna.lt 
tain, which he co-wrote with Ji 
Pierre Courscxlon. has lx*cou 
c lassie. It was on the* basis of his n 
tat ion that major American picw 
tion companies asked him to “bi 
us a story." However, things s 
turned out to lx* a hit more corn 
cati-if than that. 

“I was caught up in a kind of 
kail nightmare," said Tavern 
“Nolxxly tells you why your stoi 
turned down; you no longer ki 
who reads what; andyoucan't clis< 
anything. Often my screenplay 
refused foi unintelligible reasoi 
the favorite phrase was: ‘What 
about?' And even when rny story 
accepted, it was not on the* b.e 
wanted. The readers at 20th Cent i 
Fox were enthusiastic about 
script, hut they wanted other act 
They wanted Jane Fonda and Ro 
DeNiro. DEATHWATCH was 
meant to lx* a money-spinner anti 
presence of st.us would not make 
difference, except that I would li 
lost my freedom. 

“Obviously, this was not aconv 
mg argument.'' Tavernier adc 


by what he sees. 

"DEATHWATCH is mu about 
telev ision the way NE TW<)RK was." 
said Tavernier. "It is a lx nil television 
and the ethics of show business, 
about t lie ( uncut invasion of privacy. 
Television is a In.mi crusher. Over- 
information. over-dramatization just 
makes every thing flat. No event can 
last more than a couple of weeks on 
TV. No event can lx* an enduring 
success. This really frightens me." 

The script for DEATHWATCH 
was written hv David Ray field (JERE¬ 
MIAH JOHNSON. THREE DAYS 
OF THE CONDOR) from a David 
Compton novel The Unsleeping Eye. 
“'The main ideas are Compton's," 
said Tavernier, “but I gave them a 
cinematic approach. The book, 
obviously, had been written hy a 
writer who did not think as a film¬ 
maker. Of course. I added my own 
concerns. Among other things. 
DEA THWA TCH is about the ethics 
of filmmaking and the inability of 
|x*oplc to communicate." 

Tavernier is well known in film- 
making circle's not just as a film¬ 
maker. hut alsoasarritic. Hisanaly ti- 


cal work T rente A ns seCi nerna Ameri¬ 
can!, which he co-wrote with Jean- 
Pierre Courscxlon. has become a 
c lassie. It was on the basis of his repu¬ 
tation that major American produc¬ 
tion companies asked him to “bring 
us a story." However, things sexm 
Mimed out to lx* a hit more compli¬ 
cated than that. 

I was caught up in a kind of Kal- 
kan nightmare." said Tavernier. 
“Nolxxly tells you why your story is 
turned down; you no longct know 
who reads what; and v on can't disc uss 
anything. Often my screenplay was 
refused foi unintelligible reasons— 
the* favorite phrase was: ‘What is it 
about?' And even when my story was 
accepted, it was not on the* basis / 
wanted. The readers at 20th Century- 
Fox were enthusiastic about the* 
script, hut they wanted other actors. 
They wanted Jane Fonda and Robert 
DeNiro. DEATHWATCH was not 
meant to lx* a money-spinner and the 
prese nce of stars would not make any 
difference, except tli.it I would have 
lost my freedom. 

"Obviously, this was not a con vine • 
mg argument." Tavernier added. 


9 




















COMING 


Psycho ii is now in ilu* works by 
two different companies. III! 
RF U RN OF I K II PSYCHO (for¬ 
merly I IIE RFU’RN OF NOR 
MAN) is ilu* Piciurt* Hoiking Com¬ 
pany s pioiiiist*cl S10 million veision. 
while Lniversal. which owns ilu* 
rights to the first men it* and the book, 
has allotted si million for l*sy CHO 
II. which will In* wrint*n bv loin 
I loll.mil .iikI (In(*< led l>\ Aiistialian- 
Ixhii Rk Ii.ikI Fi.mklin (PA 1 KI( K. 
ROADG VMFS). (xr-founders of ilu 
Pidtirt* Striking Company. Gaiy 
Praxis and Mu li.iel January Insi 
appioachtd Cniversal wiili ilieii 
script, hut were* mlotmed Robert 
Kl<>( It had already develo| xd an out - 
h lie loi his own se(|ii(*l (I'liivtTsal 
lepoilidh icjei led Blex h's sequel as 
well). I’ndauntcd. I lavis and Janu¬ 
ary dec iiletl lo in Hale llieir own spin- 
oll. carefully eliminating all direci 
relerences toa seejuel lopiolec I iliein- 
selves against any |x>ssible copyright 
infringement. 



Spinrad 


BUG JACK BARRON. Noiman 

Spinrad s controvt i- 
sial science fiction 
novel, has lx*en pm - 
c based h\ l ’nivtTs.il to 
In* the next projee l ol 
dirtxior Gosta-Gavras 
(MISSI NG). Eddie 
Lewis, whoproduc ed 
MISSI N(. and w.isstl 
io product* Asimov s 
I. R( )K() riilm(since 
shelved) will continue hisasscM i.uion 
wiih Costa-Gavras on the film. Hat- 
Ian Ellison is currently working on 
the script. Flit* story deals with the 
battle of vvdlsheivvcm a media-super¬ 
star of the near futureftalk show host 
Jac k Baiion) and a rec lusivc billion¬ 
aire whoset*ks to corner the* market in 
cryogenic life-suspension. I his 
marks the fifth attempt io him Spin- 
rad's novel. Even the author nx»k a 
shot at it. using his own sciipi. “Its 
intent is to rekindle dial |h>Iiik.iI 
idealism we’ve lost,” Spimad said. 
“Our system has become a meaning¬ 
less game: you vole either Republi¬ 
can or Democ ratic —if you even In idl¬ 
er—while official party positions on 
ini|Kiitani issues offer onlv the illu¬ 
sion of a c hoice.” 


The creature from the 

BLACK LAG<X)N apparentlv is 
not the most formidable thing in the 
water. Universal’s planned updating 
of die venerable P)f>0s B-series was to 
have coinbiti(*d die* diverse talents of 
John Landis. J.k k Arnold, and Nigel 
Kneale*. bill u didii’lcomilona bigger 
fish. JAWS III has suifaced as a .‘i-D 
projee l and tlu* studio has dec ided lo 
put its money behind ii instead. Flu* 
Cleature many have licet i hot sca- 
wetd in its day. hut dial was SO years 
ago. Flu* far stronger and morerecent 
trac k record In It mgs tooneof l T niver- 
sal's all-lime In>\( illic eleadets. Mean¬ 
while hac k ai thelagcxm. Jac k Arnold 
(who had been sc*i to direct) reput¬ 
edly remains convinced that we 
haven’t heard the last of ibeCrc*ature. 
keep wale lung die waves. 


THE SCORE /ElecTRONic Music by Carlos 


By Randall D. Larson 

For a film utilizing such liighly- 
atlvanced visual effects as I RON, 
the presence of a unique musical 
score was a necessity. Flu* task of 
creating die music fell to Wendy 
Carlos, a composer noted for 
achieving exc iting breakthroughs 
in electronic synthesizer music 
with symphonic overtones for 
Stanley Kubrick’s A CLOCK¬ 
WORK ORANGE. Carlos, with 
collahoratoi Rachel Flkind.com- 
piscd and prlormed the ominous 
music for t he o|x*n ing sequences of 
Kubrick s THE SHINING. 

Carlos was exc ited by the possi¬ 
bility of incorporating electronic 
music as an equal partner with an 
orchestra and not simply an occa- 
sional embellishing piece as it has 
traditionally been in the past. 
“The asset of a synthesizer within 
an otherwise orchestral score is 
gTeal.” Carlos said. “It’s so fine* for 
a movie that it's probably some¬ 
thing that’s going to be* used a great 
deal.” 

Initially, I RON’S producers 
wanted to use orchestral music lot 
the sequences taking place in the 
real world, and synthesizer music 
duting the computer world se- 
quences, but Carlos convinced 
them to make the boundary line 
more subtle. 

“I decided to try and produce a 
score that has some areas that are 
heavy on the electronics and other 
areas which are heavy on the 
orchestra.” she said, “but by and 
large. I manipulated the orc hestral 
material and made the synthesizers 
do things that sound like an 
orchestra, and that makes them 
seem fairly diffuse, fairly hard to 
pick out. The audience should lir¬ 
as unconcerned with whether 
they’re hearing synthesizer or live 
instrumentsas they are with whetlrer 
they’re watching a live photo¬ 
graph or a computer generated 
one*.” 

To achieve the dc*sired result, 
Carlos wrote a score for a large 
orchestra, which was recorded by 
the lOfi-piece London Philhar¬ 
monic. Carlos had originally 
planned towritetheelectronic por¬ 
tion first and have the orchestra 
play along with it. but a shortage* 
of time precluded that option. 
* * I nstead. I ’ m synch ing tot heir per • 
formant e*s.” Carlos said. 

C la 1 1 os recorded the score with 
the* instruments separated as much 
as (xissible, in order to provide an 
arrangement which allowed for 
latc*r manipulation of the* instru¬ 
ments in the mixing stage. Certain 
orchestral pieces would berec orded 
at a low volume and synthesizers 
supplemented on top of them in 
such a timbre, that the ear proba¬ 



Wendy Carlos 


bly wouldn't recognize the* instill¬ 
ments underneath the synthesiz¬ 
ers. Carlos' use ol synthesizeis. 
which in IRON itu In tied a mono¬ 
phonic M(x>g. a PolyincMig. andari 
M. I F digital sythesizer. doubled 
the orchestral line of the soundtrack. 

In the early stage's of scoring. 
I RON s producers wanted Carlos 
to provide three distinct themes: 
one for the gixid guys, one for the 
bad guys and one* for I ron. Again. 
Carlos eon vine id them to wen k dif- 
ferently. She preferred to write a 
few- compositions and !c*t passages 
within those pieces become the 
de*sired thematic material rather 
than writing s|x*cili< themes. 

“The way 1 write, the tune doe-s 
not come first,’’ she said. "It all 
comes at once*, simultaneously— 
counterpoint, harmony, rhythm, 
and the timbre are all very much 
pai t of the oi iginal concept.” Car¬ 
los wrote and rexoideda 15-minute 
sample score*, which was used in a 
short demonstration reel, shown 
to prospective distributors last 
November, to show what kind of a 
film I RON was to be*. Ilu* themes 
written for that demo tajie* were 
eventually developed into what 
became the final score. 

The sound e*ffe*eis, which are to 
lx* combined with Carlos’ score in 
the final soundtrack, were created 
by Frank Serafim*, who operates 
his own sound effects studio. SFX, 
in Los Angeles. Serafine’s back¬ 
ground is in the music and audio 
sy nthesis rec circling field and he 
has worked on STAR TREK— 
THE MO TION PICTURE, THE 
FOG and THE SWORD AND 
THE SORCERER. 

Serafine’s effects work is per- 
forined exclusively bv synthesizers 
and similar electronic devices, and 
he considers this an advantage over 
the usual method of recording 
organic (re*al life) sound e*ffe*cts. 
“Traditionally, motion picture 
sound has been rec ended w ith mic¬ 
rophone's on location, then trans- 


letted to film and cut by editors.” 
Se*rafine* explained. “What we’re 
doing is taking the technology 
from the music industry and we’re 
laying all our sound effi*cts tight 
down onto mulli-tiack recording 
mac hint-s in sync with the picture.” 

According to Serafim*, this 
procedure is something of a break¬ 
through in sound e*lfe*ets produc¬ 
tion, because it has not hern used 
extensively in the |>asi. Even films 
like STAR WARS used ordinary 
organic sound effects. 

For I RON. ScTafiue reseaic lied 
appropriate sounds for more than 
a year, including studying the 
sounds develo|xd foi Atari’s coin- 
operated computet games. Because* 
the film lakes place in a videogame 
world, many ol the sound effects 
will include recognizable games 
sounds, such as those of Pac -Man 

The final blending of music 
with e*ffects, and how many eftec ts 
will lx* musical and how many w ill 
lx* created by the sound effects 
department is to lx* determined by 
t he produccrsdtir ing the final mix¬ 
ing stage's. In those areas where the 
two come together, the prcxiucers 
have indicated the*y will keep the 
sound (‘fleets staccato and some¬ 
what dry. in order not todrow trout 
what music is then*. 

The role of electronics and syn¬ 
thesizers has played a huge role in 
the* total sound of I RON, much 
the same way that computers have 
dominated its dynamic visual 
elicits. Carlos is confident that syn¬ 
thesizers will scxrn become a legiti¬ 
mate family member of conven¬ 
tional orchestras. Most orchestral 
music utilizes a great interplay of 
instruments, with notes coming 
from all the sections lapidly fall¬ 
ing one after another, and Carlos 
sttongly believes that synthi*sizers 
can lx* an effective part of that 
interplay. 

“An imaginative film composer 
could make* the synthesizer the 
color undi'rneath the music that 
every so often rise's to the surf ace for 
a momentary solo, the way you do 
with the woodwindsor what-have- 
you." 

Whether or not I RON will be* 
the s|x*arhe*ad for this kind of scor¬ 
ing, Carlos can’t tell. “They’ll 
probably bx»k back on I RON as 
being a pioneer mg venture in ImxIi 
visuals and the music. but I’m not 
sure how much of that will lx* 
imitudiaiclv obvious.” 

Carlos expects computet graph¬ 
ics to steal the* show initially, but 
the unique combination of or¬ 
chestral and electronics in the 
music will eventually lx* recog¬ 
nized as well. “I tend to overwork 
things so that they are more subtle 
than ne*c*d lx*. It’s there, it just 
dex-sn’t hit you in the face*.” 


io 













COMING 





Poltergeist 

For makeup artist Craig 
Reardon , this blockbuster 
ghost story is his chance to 
become a household word. 


By Kyle Counts 


You m.i\ noi know tin name Craig Rear¬ 
don, bill chances are you’ve seen samples of 
ibis up-and-coming makeup artist’s handi¬ 
work m stub films as PROPHECY. EUN- 
IIOI’SK. and ALTERED STATES, in 
which be assisted bis mentor. I)i«k Smith. 

Hie 29-vear-old attist is confident that bis 
days of \ititial anonymity were over as of 
June I. when MGM United Artists released 
POL I ERGEIS I. the Steven Spiellx'tg sub- 
urban ghost story lot whic h Reardon created 
s|>e< ial makeup c*ffec ts. 

Real don received a tall ftotn POLTER¬ 
GEIST three tot Tolx* I lexiper. whodirec ted 
FUNHOl \SE and was shopping around t>n 
Ih ball of producers Spielberg and 
Trank Mat shall lot someone to bandit* 
the s|mi ialcffet ts makeup for the film. 

Marshall offm-d Reardon tlu- job. a •'hugesmilm R mouih.onecapableol 
decision dial was heartily sup|xiried "pnmRto wider than humanly pos- 
In SpirllM'ig alu*t Rc.iidim s assur- sibh*. and through which shafts ol 
ance that ih< required e(f«is would IikI " wo J w u I""'" *«* •»««- 
lx* delivered on time in just the Once Reardon finished the model, 
short four weeks allotted to his Spielberg—the last word on all cre- 

preproduc lion efforts. al,vc * det ,slons - and h » " m rHect. 

Reardon’s first assignment, with d,d d * re<l du * * dn1, according tt» 

first-class artist sculptor Mike Me- Reardon—okayed it. The model was 

Cracken asco-worker. was tocrealea «hen sent to the Industrial Light and 

"grinning, ghastly head" (referred to Magic (ILM) effects facility to beopli- 
as the "Horror Head” by the crew) tally enhanced, 
that would completely fill the door * nfortunately. Icouldn t be there 

frame of the "haunted closet" that lorihc filming, and.. |ust wasn’t shot 

figures prominently in the film. properly, lamented Reardon. In- 
Spielberg wanted the head to feature <d du ma<id>re < ffett we were 

striving for. it ended up looking like* 
something from LAND OF THE 
GIANTS, with this over-si/ed head 
|>eering down at this tiny person. 
There was also a di stern able latk of 
facial animation, which completely 
dissipated the impac t." 

Spiellietg re-thought tht* concept 
of the Horror Head and replaced 

Right: Craig Reardon with one of 13 
cadavers used in the film. Below: JoBeth 
Williams is surrounded by articulated 
skeletons in the unfinished pool. 


Craig Reardon s 


“Horror Head." 


Reardon's design with one resem¬ 
bling. ironically, one of the artist's 
early sketches: a skull with grayish 
tissue and light hulheyes. Built at the 
lltli hour. Reardon considered the 
new head mitt h less effective. 

The first scenes to lx* filmed were 
thee limattic end of the pic ture where 
corpses come bursting through the 
lawn. |x»rt h. and kite hen of thcEreel- 
ing home, the epicenter of the story’s 
paranormal activity. Using short¬ 
cuts and "leap hogging" over a few 
standard makeup procedures, Rear¬ 
don and McCracken mined in 1.1 
articulated cadavers in only a few 
weeks. Through careful placement 
and judicious editing, the II stiffs 
writ* made to appear as many more 
for die Grand Guignol finale. 

The corpses were built over actual 
bone skeletons (chea|x*r than plastic 
skeletons, which look identical 
because they are taken from the same 
mold). Some of the fates were built 
ditettly from latex materials, while 
others were St ulpted on the bone and 
molded with latex to provide more 
control over tlieit personality. A final 
paint job made them ap|x*ar recently 
deceased, or (with olive green and 
brown paint) suggested an aged-in- 
the-ground look. 

Teeth were fashioned m various 
snagglv state’s, anti several of the 
corpse’s had eyeballs and hair intact; 
others were simply left as unadorned 
skeletons for variety. "Tobe was 
fascinated by grisly details,” said 
Reardon, "lie insisted on things like 
puss and txwe. I ledidn’t want to miss 
pulling out any of the stops. 

"We wanted a semi-exaggerated, 
semi-melfxlraniatic effect." he con¬ 
tinued. "like something out of an old 
monster movie, without the cartoon- 
ishness. keeping in mind the style 
of the old EC horror tomits anti 
sculpting an angry or agoni/cd 
expression right into the face, we got 
what we wanted.” 


The hardest scene to film was the swim¬ 
ming |xx>l scene where JoBeth Williams 
finds herself surrounded by several recyc led 
bodies. Reardon had devised bobbing 
mac bine’s with levers to elevate the corpses 
out of the water, but the weight of the water 
made the controls jam. Operators had to 
submerge themselves in the muddy water 
and manipulate the corpses like hand 
puppets. Ultimately, because of the pace of 
the editing very littleof the corpses' arm illa¬ 
tion capabilities were utilized. 

Othet unusual dutic*s fot Reardon was to 
ac tually sc nipt a New York steak. Wbic h.due 
to clever—and secretive—pupjx’try on his 
part, seems to m< hi vale itself ac toss the kite hen 
countertop, erupting into a cancerous blob 
befote |iara|rsyc hologist M.ntv Gasella’s eyes. 
The nauseated (^tsella rushestoa utility room 
to splash his face with water, and sets up 
another Reardon effet t. (lasellanotices.! blem¬ 
ish on his face and under I he light touc hot his 
fingers, his flesh begins to chop away. 

" The problem was twofold," said Rear¬ 
don, "how to make a mobile face fall apart 
without exposing the motivating mec hanics 
underneath, and what kind of material to use, 
since it had to lx* sturdy yet vulnerable enough 
to fall apart on camera. We ttied 
everything known to makeup and mad 
science before I came up with a satis- 
faclory conglomeration of kite hen pro- 
due ts that Mike McCracken duhlxil 
‘Necro-Derm.* ” 

Reardon's last piec eof work was to 
realize, m c lay sc ulpture from a design 
by ILM's Nilo Rodis. a flying goblin 
for the story's s|x*c tac ular finish. The 
original design, however, was re¬ 
placed (except for the head) with a 
Ixxly built out of cxlds and ends. 

Reardon found Steven Spielberg a 
dynamic jx’tson and easy to work 
with and talk to. ”'Tolx* Hooper 
was always there," said Reardon, "but 
the film was essentially guided by 
Steven’s strong hand. As he said in 
an interview, Steven wants ter do every¬ 
body’s job as well as they do, but 
concedes that he needs help.” Spiel¬ 
berg was impressed enough by Rear¬ 
don to engage linn to do the final 
limiting of the titlec liarac ter of Spiel¬ 
berg's other summer film, E.T. □ 


Reardon s original flying goblin. The 
body was replaced with odds and ends. 





11 











COMING 


Nannaz 


Artist Neal Adams turns actor, producer, 
writer and director in a $40,000 home movie. 



By Dan Scapperntti 

For years, film producers have* 
taken tin* characters, stories and 
visions of the comic strip artist and 
translated them to the screen. But 
more often than not. the filmmakers 
had ignored or destroyed the s|x*cial 
creative s|iark that made the* comic 
strip so enjoyable in the* fiist place. 

However, a comic hook artist is 
finallv making his wen film. And if it 
isn't a multimillion dollar extrava¬ 
ganza. it’s certainly one of the oddest 
movies in some time. 

Neal Adams—a veteran illustrator 
|M*ihaps Ix’si known for his work on 
IXi's Green Lantern Green Arrow 
series—has set out to make his own 
film. At the age of 10. inspired by film 
courses he look at New York’s New 
School For Social Research. Adams 


has assumed the* roles of producer, 
director, screenwriter and actor, 
among other c holes 

Ills clever screenplay pits a hmtal 
adult world against the* sheltered 
world of a pail of pre-teen c hildren. A 
naive engineer (played b\ Adams) 
invents a gadget worth millions, and 
innocently leaves the mechanism 
with his two children when lie gcx*s 
curt for the* night. I liter groups of 
industrial spies—all of whom will 
stop at nothing—vie for the secret 
device, whic h is hidden in a Polaroid 
carrying case. 

1 he story follows the* thugs’ at¬ 
tempts to wrest the camera c ase* horn 
the kids. Vic>lenc eet upts tIncnigtnnil. 
with the* ranks of the spies thinned In 
bullets, open elevator shafts, axs and 
a razor-sharp oriental throwing star. 
Sounds routine, right? Wrong. The 
gimmick is that most of the 
calamities which befall the* 
crooks are caused by the title 
charac let. the kids’ toy mon¬ 
key! Nannaz (baby talk for 
“bananas”) doc*sn’t ac tuallv do 

Left Nannaz. a toy monkey, 
is the mysterious cause of death 
and destruction in comic artist Neal 
Adams' quirky home movie. Adams 
himself (below) is featured as a 
brilliant—but naive—inventor. 



anything, at least nothing more than 
a normal stuffed animal might do, 
hut always ends up in the* right place 
at the right time. Adding to the* 
delight, the kids aren't the least bit 
aware of what’s going on around 
them; Nannaz keeps saving their lives 
Ixhind the ir Iku ks. 

Flic* cast is coni|M>sed of familiar 
fac c*s. Familiar to Adams, that is. The 
kids are plavc*d by his son, Jason, and 
daughter. Zeca. I he villains are 
friends and colleague's from the com- 
ics world: Cray Morrow, presently 
doing the Buck Rogers strip; Jay 
Scott Pike, who had a long stav with 
Romance comics for DC; Denys 
Oman, a |x*ih ilcr for Marvel Com¬ 
ics; Ralph R(*c*se. who handled the* 
“One Year Affair" strip m National 
Ijirnpoon: David Mannic k. an editor 
at DC; I -it iv Hama, who edits Crazy; 
and illustrator Jac k Sparling. 

. Cutting costs was the keynote for 
Adams, who relied on a startling, 
innovative technic|ue—nobcxly gets 
paid. Instead, his cast and crew were 
given |M*rcvillages of the film. Adams 
shot weekends, using equipment for 
three days while pav ing for only one. 
“And since* I was writing the story. I 


it m) k advantage of the* resources that 
were available to me," he added. "I 
would find a place that was available 
for filming and I would write* that 
into the story. A h lend of mine had a 
c ah. so there’s a c ah in the movie.” 

One problem confronting Adams 
was the need for gun shots and explo¬ 
sions—no one he knew had the 
required explosives license. "Effects 
|M*oplccan be expensive and you have 
to pay them.’’ Adams said. ’’But you 
can go to the* fire dc|>art merit, show 
them you have a certain amount of 
knowledge and they’ll give you a 
license for $20. I thought, who looks 
more like* a fireman than I do? Now I 
have a second grade pyrotechnist 
lie ense. I was encouraged to go for the 
first class test because then I could 
blow up cars." 

Principal photographs lx*gan in 
April 1981 and wrap|x*d early this 
year, although editing and scoring 
chores remain to lx* handled Once 
the him is completed. Adams will 
begin the picxessofentic ingadisttih- 
uior to handle thecxld projec t. Thus 
fai Adams has sunk about $ 10,000 in 
the projet t using Minim film, fot later 
blow-up to 15mm. O 


GREYSTOKE: RICK BAKER CARRIES ON HIS AFFAIR WITH THINGS SIMIAN 


Afte r several years of script devel¬ 
opment, Warner Bros, has given the 
go-ahead on GREYSTOKE., a $20 
million production based on Fdgat 
Rice Burroughs’ first Tarzan novel. 
The projec t was launched in 1977 
In Robert Fowne (PERSONAL 
BF.S I ). who was to both write and 
direct. However, Hugh Hudson 
(CHARIOTS OF FIRE) has rc- 
plac ed Townc as director, although 
Townc's script will still lx* used. 

GREYSTOKE ts trot your stan¬ 
dard loincloth film,concentrating 
instead on the ape-man's life as an 
English aristocrat. Four months of 
principal photography are cur¬ 
rently planned—two months ott 
African locations, two months at 


England’s EMI studios. Part of the* 
large budget (vvliic h may esc alateas 
high as $.15 million Ixfore filming 
begins late this year) will go 
towards the development of sophis¬ 
tic ated ape suits, to be built by 
Oscar-winner Rick Baker. 

“It’s a graif script.’’ said Baket, 
currently at work in London. “I've 
never read anything I’ve thought 
thisgocxl before. II it’s shot the way 
it reads—and I've been promised it 
will —it’ll lx* a c lassic movie." 

GREYS’ I ROKE could very well 
prove the* capstone of a recurring 
motif in Baker's work— evident in 
SC FI LOCK. KING KONG. KEN¬ 
TUCKY FRIED-MOVIE and Mil 
INCREDIBLE SHRINKING WO¬ 


MAN—his deep fascination with 
a|x*s. “II I hadn't become involved 
with makeup." he said, wearing a 
T-shirt that reads Gorillas need 
love . too . "I’d probably have lx*- 
cotne a zcxikeeper or something.” 
For GREYS POKE, Baker will at¬ 
tempt to create the most life-like 
a|x* suits ever seen, and in quantity. 

“We’re going to use* su|MT-small 
actors.’’ Baker explained, "and cre¬ 
ate not chimps, but a chimp-like 
race that falls somewhere between a 
c lump and a gorilla." Ac tors fitting 
just these s|x*c ific ations of size and 
necessary athletic prowess have 
been salaried by Warners since the 
days of I'owne’s involvement. 

"My main problem is not enough 


time.” Baker explained. “I figure 
the script |x»ses a gcxxl two years' 
work, and I've got only six months 
to do it in. They’re expecting me to 
do a|x* suits that have never been 
sern before and ex pec ting the actors 
to do things that men in ape suits 
have never done before. Like swing¬ 
ing from tree to tree, or pulling 
themselves up onto branc hes from 
the* ground with one hand. 

"To do the required amount o( 
work," added Baker. “I have to hire 
a crew of 70—which is scary, 
because it's hard enough dealing 
with six different artistic tempera- 
merits in one shop. Flic* thought of 
7()|x*ople like that! That's vvhat&m 
won ied about!" Tim Lucas 

















Sketch artist Chris Hobbs 
design tor the picture's 
mutating astronaut. The 
final prosthetic suit is to be 
worn by a mime artist bent 
over backwards on all tours. 


Xtro 

A low-budget British 
horror film that's 
designed to cash-in 
on Spielbergs E.T. 

By Alan Jones 

One* in. hi hoping Steven Spiel¬ 
berg'* new movie, K.T., will lx- .m 
enoi moils sue (css is pitxlucer Maik 
Forstater. lit knows rnivtis.il will 
be s|M‘iidinga lot of money m promot¬ 
ing exactly what ih.il title mean* 
(I I is short lot exn.iierresm.il)and 
he'd like to think that his current 
pitnlut lion \ I K<) will lintl puhlit 
acceptance that unit heasier Hudgti- 
wise \ I RO isn't in the same league, 
hill Forester's allusions It» Spicllxig 
don’t stop with the title. 

" I lit* story rrallv lakes oil from the 
end til CLOSE ENCOIN I F.RSOF 
THE FIIIR1) KIM), he said, It s 
alrout a guy w horetui nsioF.u thalter 
having lieen away on anoiht , t planet 
It >t ihiee years." But he ret urt is altered 
intt> a lilt-hum which terrorizes an 
isol.uttl rural comitHiniiy. lie impreg¬ 
nates a woman via a teni.it It* that 
emeiges from his c best and she gives 
hittli to tht* mail as he was lx*fore he 
went t>n his intergalac tic journey. 

I he man returns to his family and 
converts his son, who carries on the 
father’s alien ways like infecting the 
maid by injecting t*ggs into her stom- 
at h and making Ins toys come to life*. 
All these unearthly events unsettle 
the man's wife and she chooses to 
light hat k. too late to.diet t the liu|jf- 
lessness of the situation. Still, even 
she is not pie)rated lot what is alrout 
to oc e lli . . . 

Philadelphia-born Fotstater is no 
newcomer to unusual fantasy proj¬ 
ects; he has also produced MON TY 
P\ mONAND THE HOLY GRAIL 
and IT IF (.1.1 I TER BALL. He got 
involved with \ FRO when co-wiit- 
et diietioi Ham Biomelx Haven- 
poit«amt* to him w itliasc ript wntten 
with Mu lu I Party. Fotstater hi ought 


COMING 








t*--. 


m two other writers, Rolrcit Smith 
and lain Cassic*. " I Ire plot was kept 
iiilat l." he said, "hut tht* new writers 
went oil into weird and wonderful 
tangents. It’s a synthesis ol ALIEN 
and a lot ol leteiii ideas, hut it's really 
how \ou put them together, and the 
six It* with which you appioat It tht* 
material, that is im|roitaut." 

Fotstater met Davenport, who 
wrote the liist draft ol Peter Straub’s 
THE IIAt’X'UNG OF JCLIA.dur¬ 
ing a screening ol WHISPERS OF 
FEAR, Daveiritoil's duet tonal dchui. 
‘‘1 was impit ssed with it." said Foi- 
stater, "It is the* haulest exert isc*of all 
to make a him lot / in.non (about 
and limit yourself to one set 
and one at tress, hut llaiix pulled it 
oil 

\ I RO is lx nig finant ed by Ashley 
PkmIik lions I.td. a suhsidiaiy ol a 
Biitish investment group Ixised in 
Mane liestei. " The company had 
dealings xxitli the leisure imlustix 
lx*loie." said Fdrstaloi. "When I 
introduced them to this projet t they 
liked it. found they could afford it. 
and that it gave* them a (bailee to 
break into pnxlut lion." 


Bernice Stegers fights off the disintegrating advances of husband Philip Sayer 


Simon Nash, after being infested by 
his father, a returning astronaut, 
implants alien eggs into the stomach of 

the family's maid (Maryam D Abo). 

lilt* st.ns ol \ 1 RO ate Philip 
Sayct. ten x cat-old Simon Nash and 
Bernice Siegers, xvlro was last seen 
making love Ur a severed head in 
Lamerto Bax as MACABRE. The 
s|x*c tal c*ffec Is xvotk is lx*ing handled 
hx Tom Harris and Franc is (dates. 
"()m six xveek shtH>ting schedule 
meant we had to lx* nit ledibly pic*c ise 
ulxiul the effects we xv.inied." said 
Forstater. Francis came up with 
designs that we have had to slick to. 
Everything had to work the first time 
as couldn't affoid delay. Every lime 
xvc* shot an effc*c t. three others had to 
lx* lined up in case something xveni 
xvtong. II the prosthetic on the* maid’s 
stoipat h didn’t xvc irk (he first time, off 
it went and anothci one xveni on 
immediately.'’ 

(Jills Hobbs, a skeit h artist. 
Iiel|x*d sort out the x isiialcont eptsfor 
lilt* pitxluc lion. ()i iginallx. a man in 
a lac dess nihlxi suit was suggested 
lot lilt* creatine, hut xv.is sciup|x-d 
when llohhs tame up xxitli a c lexer 
and original idea. I ho|x* the audi- 
eilt e dix sn’t tc-.ih/e this, but OIII c lea- 
ttitc* is a man on his hack, on all 
loins." said Foistatei. ‘lie x\ ill haxe 
to .lit ll 1 1 1 Hist II as mile ll as lie t all so 
this won’t lx hxi ohx ions. We lined a 
trained mime aitist. who |xilct ted a 
sliaiige st utile You oitlx sec diet tea- 
tuteat night.sol think well gel a wax 
W illi it ." 

Otliei s|x*t i a I el let is st*cpient es 
involve a giant tixixiii. the latht*i 
inlet ting his sou hx impl.miiiig his 
lips into his shouldei. a sc leaui 
c*xpltxliug a man'searclimils.and the 
lather deteiioiaiing so hadlx that lit 
hlei.il lx lalls.ipai I. At c oicluig to Ful- 
slalei. these am hi I ions el let Is will lx- 
dealt with in an elegant xx.tx. "We’ve 
gone h ii the til\. t lean Itxik," lie said. 
" I here’s no goic oi slime to mxoke 
an uneasx plixsital it*s|x»nse. I know 
that audieiites ait* now so sophisti- 
tated that tlit x want to see it all. hut 


Director Harry Bromley Davenport 
works out camera angles as the 
prosthetic makeup device for D'Abo's 
stomach is attached and concealed. 

xvc* II gel gloss only as a last tesoti: il 
we tlet it It* that ihcellet isaien'l work- 
ing. We ll dti whalexei is net ess.ux to 
make them work and I won’t a|xdo- 
gi/e lot it il that's what we have to 
do." 

New I ,ine( aiiema will Ix-ie leasing 
\ I K() lalei this xeai. attoithng to 
Foi stale*!. ”1 hex welt* impiessetl In 
tin lat t that PI I \\ I ASM t ost noth¬ 
ing." he said, "hut went on lomukea 
loiltillf. One ol two stelit s. like lilt 
living silver glolx-. t.insect iiemeu- 
doils wold ol moillh. I Ilex s.iw the 
Ix»it*i 1 1i.iI loi those* same Ini// nio- 
mt ills' in X I RO." 

Fotstater xxoiksm EnglandIx'tniisc 
lie loves fantasy anti tlix-sn’i want it> 
lx- rx |x*-t asl as he would lx- in I lollx - 
wood. "Rigulitx is hai till til." he said. 
"II all g<x*s well. I ll lx- making three 
lilnisthisxeai. I low iii.mx pitxlucers 
in I lollx wtxxl i an sax iliai.' Although’ 
Foisiatc'i is interested in a wide s|x*t - 
iiiiiii til piojec is. his next iwti lilms 
will also lx- in the lantasx vein. I* ii si is 
(.()\l \(*|()\ It>i diiecloi ll.iilex 
(iokliss. the tliiet loi til BAI I I .F- 
I RICK Second is I 111 (Oi l) 
ROOM, to he directed hx James 
Df.iidfii in Beilin. "ITsatluillei xxitli 
a tlashol llietx t nil "said Foistatei. D 


















COMING 


Brainstorm 

Douglas Trumbull's fighting for survival against the MGM lion. 



Douglas Trumbull directs the late Natalie Wood. 


By Paul Sammon 

Poor Doug Ii umbull. 

MC.M has refused to 
view the work print of 
BRAINSTORM, director 
Trumbull's science fic¬ 
tion braille hild ib.it has 
been torpedoed by the 
death ol its star Natalie 
Wood. After some hard 
negotiations, MGM-UA 
Entertainment. the* film's 
hac ker and distributor, 
agreed to wait and view a 
work print of the film 
“without prejudice.” in¬ 
stead of shelving it and fil¬ 
ing a c laim with Lloyds of 
London. Lloyds insured 
the film, in the event it 
could not Ik* completed, 
for $12 million. 

Lloyds gave Ti umbull 
$.1 million to complete the 
print ipal photography, 
which he had clone by 
March. 1982. But now 
MGM-UA refuses to view 
the* print until 25 second 
unit scenes (noneof whic h 
involved scenes with Nat¬ 
alie WcmkJ). are filmed. 

A stalemate has developed, with 
Ixith sides claiming that the other 
is not living up to its contractual 
agreements. MGM Films chairman 
Frank Rosenfell pointed out that 
the term ‘second unit photography" 
never arose in discussions with 
Lloyds and that his company agreed 
only that the s|K*cial effects would 
not Ik* included in the* work print 
to Ik* submitted to MGM. 

“We were only to shoot those 
scenes nec essary in order to release the 
ac tors and re le ase* the* se t," Frumbull 
countered. “Lloydsof 1 .ontlon wasn't 
s|M*nding a jxiiny on anything that 
had to clo with second unit photog- 
i.iphv or photographs that didn't 
involve the* pi inc ipals." 

I bis is not the first time 1 ttun- 
hiill has had the mg pulled out 
from under him. After creating the 
s|m*c ial effects of 2001 and I III* AN- 
I) ROM FDA STRAIN. I rumbull 
was riding high with his first direc tor- 
ial effort. SILENT RUNNING. 
I hat was 1971; for more than adre ade 
since. Fiumbull has tiled to add a 
second directing credit after his 
name. FiiimbiiH’s next film was to 
have* lx*en a sc iencefiction story titled 
PYRAMID. Preproduc lion on ihe* 
film was already underway when 
MGM. also its distributor, abruptly 
pulled the plug. 

I 'ndaunted. I mmbull soon found 
a second project. JOURNEY Ok 
I HE OCEANAUTS, an effects- 
laden underwater epic, was to be 
underwritten by producer Anhui I* 
Jacobs (PLANT I OF I MF APES). 
But Jacobs clictl suddenly and the 
film sank. 

Now. Frumhuirs lighting lor 


more than a chance to direct another 
film, lie fighting to save his brain- 
c hiId Foi him this just isn't another 
“effects laden extravaganza.” he 
believes in BRAINS IORM. "Ibis 
story will make ALTERED STATES 
look like pahlum." said I rumbull. 
“What was of prime importanc etous 
was that, though the* characters are 
scientists, we wanted them to be 
shown as people fiist. In fact, you 
could say that we’re trying to com¬ 
bine the highly human, dramatic 
c|iialnies of an ORDINAR5 PFO- 
PLF with the high-tech aura of a 
scienc e lie tion film. We're not |xirtray- 
ing the scientists as weirdos." 

BRAINSTORM began as a story 
called "The George Dunlap Tape," 
by Biuee Rubin. The final script isbv 
Rubin. Robert Geichell (ALICE 
DOESN'T LIVE HER ANYMORE) 
and Philip F. Messina. I rumbull 
also contributed to the* sc lipt. Chris¬ 
topher Walken stars as cot innate 
scientist Michael Brace. Natalie 
WocmI as Biace's wife Karen. Louise 
Fletcher as Lillian. Brace's no-non¬ 
sense assistant, and Glifl Robertson 
as Brace's lx»ss. 

Dm ing research. Brace stumble’s 
across a direct-line video recorder 
transmitter that can record and 
transmit any experience or sensation 
directly into a subject's brain. Faking 
ibis basic idea as its springboard. 
BRAINS FORM sc k in escalates intoa 
series of s|k*c tac ulat effee is see|lienees 
involv ingcor|Mirate intrigue, murder 
and life after death. 

I hen. on November 29. 1981, 
around midnight, while vac ationing 
with hei husband off Galalina Island. 
Natalie Wood disappeared. Fight 


hours later, the 13-year-old 
ac tress’ Ixxly was discover¬ 
ed floating a few hunched 
yards off Catalina's Blue 
Cavern Point. Theoffic ial 
coroner’s re|Kirt listed the* 
c ause of death as ac c idental 
drowning. 

Two days following 
Wood's death. MGM shut 
down prcxluction. MGM 
insisted, and still insists, 
that the film is “fatally 
flawed" without Wchk! to 
complete the filming of 
what the*disti ihutordeem¬ 
ed "twoerne ial scenes." 

Flu* sus|x*nsion of film¬ 
ing c aim* a sc ant t wci weeks 
before the end of pi inc ipal 
photography. Trumbull 
had already shot the major 
secpiences covering the* 
lx*ginning. middle*antic li- 
mac tic finale* of the* film, 
lie also has all of the ele¬ 
ments |xirtraying Wcxxl's 
relationship with Walken 
in the*can. Further. MGM 
had Ixrn mistaken; there 
were actually four scenes 
of Wocxl left to she mu. 
Many people close* to 
the production feel that MGM s 
confusion over the number of Wcxxl’s 
scenes, reveals that the* distributor 
was working from the original script 
and bad not realized how Wood's 
part had been changed bv rewrites. 
MGM might not have had all the 
available information, and jum|x*d 
to a cpiic k decision. Namely that 
they'd lx* better ofl pursuing their 
claim with Lloyds of London. 

* Trumbull maintained that the 
scenes with Wood were “rather 
minor" and transitional. 1 le was pos¬ 
itive he could shoot around tlu* hole's, 
restrtic lure these ript and save the pic - 
ture from the shelf. I wo of Wcxxl's 
remaining scene's were simply drop¬ 
ped, a return to the first screenplay’s 
concept of the character. Trumbull 
then rewrote the* last two scenes by 
giving Wcxxl’s essential dialogue to 
actor Jcx* Dorsey, who plays a lab 
assistant to Walken in the* film. 

It tcxik four weeks of she xiting and a 
couple of weeks of editing to produce 
the* rough cut that MGM now refuses 
to sec*. If the insurance claim is paid 
(MCiM-UA has already threatened to 
sue), it leaves the possibility open that 
I .loyds could lake the film toanother 
distributor, or release* it themselves. 

Foi 1 1 umbull the* legal battles are 
just one more frustration added onto 
all the others he* has experienced. 
Some how, though, he has remained 
optimistic. "I defy any professional 
filmmaker or moviegoer to detect 
where Natalie* Wood is missing in the* 
film." he said. Hopefully, the studio 
and the* insuranc e agents will come to 
terms, and Ftumhull will regain the 
momentum lost to the* dark waters off 
Catalina Island. D 


The Twilight Zone.* 

SPIELBERG'S NEXT? 

Advanc ing from the rumor 
stage to ac tive projec t develop¬ 
ment. n IF IWILJGHI ZONE 
film is a long-discussed and 
eagerly-awaited attempt to 
revive the c lassie television se¬ 
ries in a feature format. Avail¬ 
able information is sketchy 
and tentative, and there is no 
real certainty that a TWI¬ 
LIGHT ZONE film will lx* 
made, but a source close to the 
production adds: “Film proj¬ 
ects don’t come any more pre¬ 
sold than this." 

Warner Bros, which owns 
Viacom, television’s syndica¬ 
tor of the series, and Twilight 
Z one magazine, is prrxluc ing. 
Necessarily, an anthology struc- 
ture is envisioned, probably 
with some linking device— 
though it is recognized that 
there is no way to replace R«xl 
Sel ling. A TWILIGHT ZONE 
movie would likely lie com¬ 
posed of three or four stories: 
mostly originals written in the 
style of the scries, plusonestory 
drawn from the series but 
revised and elaborated lor fea¬ 
ture use*. Ric hard Matheson is 
scripting some segments. 

John Landis. Jcx* Dante and 
Steven Spielberg are currently 
set as individual story directors 
with a possible fourth director 
to lx* designated, if a fourth 
story is to lx* approved. Spiel¬ 
berg and L^mdis are the overall 
producers of the film, hut it is 
expected that Spielberg will lx* 
the guiding hand. 

No scripts for a TWILIGHT 
ZONE movie are in yet. and the 
tentative budget has lx*en set 
for under $10 million. Word is 
Warner Bios would liketohave 
the film by Christmas. “I know 
that sounds impossible and 
insane." said our source, "even 
shooting concurrently with 
separate crews as is planned. 
But remember, this is Holly- 
woe xl." 

If Warner Bros is serious on 
the release* date, work will have 
to accelerate very soon this 
summer. A potential compli¬ 
cating factor is that all three 
directors have several other 
projec ts in development. Some 
of which are likely to become 
solid commitments. 

Spielberg has three other 
films lined up, including a 
remake of A GUY NAMED 
JOE. Landis has a Hilchcock- 
ian suspenses, IN TO THE 
NIGHT, at Fox, and Dante— 
who has turned down numer¬ 
ous film offers to stic k with his 
still-in-development IHE 
PHILADELPHIA EXPERI¬ 
MENT—has another supe*se¬ 
cret project in the works. 


14 







COMING 


Firefox 

Clint Eastwood's new summer film soars on 
wings sup plied by John Dykstra’s Apogee Inc. 


Producer, star, and director Clint Eastwood holds a model helicopter built by Apogee. 


By Bob Villard 

( Inn Eastwood is directing, pro- 
due ing. .iikI starring in his new film. 
FIREFOX, hut lie knows when to 
step aside and let a master take* over. 
His < hoice to create and film the spe¬ 
cial effects for hisfuturistic espionage 
saga was A|x>gec* Inc or|xMated. John 
Dvksta's state-of-the-art fat ility. IKk- 
stra's company, undet a different 
name Inn with a lately similar staff, 
created the eve-popping effects foi 
STAR WARS. S EAR I REK-HIE 
MO IION PICI I RE.and BA'ITLE- 
STAR G ALACTICA. 

FIREFOX is the code name for the* 
“ultimate warplane" the (fictional) 
Russian MIG-31, which can fly at six 
limes the speed of sound undetec ted 
by radar. Its integrated weapons sys¬ 
tem. adaptable to nuc lear armament, 
is operated by pilot thought waves— 
an advanc e in tec hnology which has 
no precedent. 

When this information is relayed 
to British and American intelligence, 
their course of ac lion is c|iiite logic al: 
steal the warplane! And who could 
pull off a stunt like that better than 
the ultimate mister macho. Glint 
Eastwood. 

The FIREFOX finale is a spec tac u- 
lar special effects display, pitting the 
stolen MIG-31 supersonic fighter 
against the entire Russian air defense 
system, which is frantically trying to 
bring the plane down. To insure this 
sequenc e's c redibility. Eastwoodc on- 
lac ted John Dykstra. 

Apogcr Inc. is an assemblage of 
some of the world's top effects 
experts, including Dykstra himself, 
an Academy Award winner for his 
work on STAR WARS, who pio- 

Filming the Firefox as it lands on an 
arctic ice floe for refueling, a large 
outdoor set built in the parking lot of 
Apogee. Inc. Clint Eastwood (far left) 
watches as effects supervisor John 
Dykstra (second from right) and his 
crew prepare the miniature plane for a 
take using Apogee s high speed camera. 


ileered new areas of motion control 
photography with the creation of a 
camera which licars his name—the 
Dykstraflex. Hie Apogee* stall in- 
c hides Roliert Shepherd (ptoduc lion 
manager). Al Miller (electronics sys- 
temsdesign), Don 1 tumhull (camera 
design). Dick Alexander (camera 
building). Douglas Smith (camera 
o|x*rator), William Sliourt (special 
mechanical effects). Giant Me Guile 
(chief model maker). and Roge r Doi¬ 
lies (optical photographs). 

Located inside a 30,000square foot 
lac ilit\. Apogee is the only small stu¬ 
dio of its kind in the world whic h has 
the* capacity of making a complete 
motion picture in-house. "We have 
separate departments for every phase* 
of production." Dykstra explained. 
"We have an optical facility, full 
stage* photographic capability, pro¬ 
duction and insert stages, depart¬ 
ments for animation, illustration, 
me xtel and spec ial effects, and a com¬ 
plete still photography lab." 

Dykstra’s philosophy that "the 
best effects should go unnoticed," 
was put to a severe tc*st by Eastwocxl 
who, among other stipulations, 
instruc ted that the MIG-31 should lx* 
black and very shiny—two very diffi¬ 
cult requirements given the inherent 
limitations of composite (matte) pho¬ 
tography required to incorporate the 
craft into various backgrounds. 
"Photographing a shiny aircraft." 
said Dykstra, "is a theoretical taboo 
because* a lughlv reflective surface is 
a big problem in matte photography." 

Some other "ground-breaking" by 
Apogee for FIREFOX included 
adapting an inertial navigational sys¬ 
tem for motion control effects work; 
use* of a motion control camera on 
location (shooting an empty run¬ 
way) to simulate the actual E'lRE- 
FOX takeoff; and use*of a moving key 
light with front projection for the 
in-cockpit process sequences. 

Nine models of the FI REFOX were 
built by Apogee for the production; 
four large scale models and four 


small scale models, and one built to 
ac tual. full si/e spec ifications.Twoof 
the larger models ac tually flew. 'Hie 
rest were used for blue screen compos¬ 
ite miniature photography, except 
the* life-size model. 

I he inockup MIG-31—66 feet 
long. 11 lert wide, and 20 feet high— 
was built from a radio-station broad¬ 
cast antenna skeleton, with plywood 
and filx*tglass skin. It had complete 
running gear and could taxi up to 20 
miles an hour. 

The most difficult and creative 
part of the Apogee’s participation 
were sequences depicting the* FIRE- 
FOX in-flight. "We used a real plane 
to duplicate all the maneuvers.” Dyk¬ 
stra acknowledged, a technique 
w tiich ec hoes the c horeographed 
WWII aerial “dog fights" emulated 
by the spaceships in S EAR WARS. 

"We mounted a camera m the nose 
of a Learjet piloted by Clay Lacy, one 
of the* finest stunt-pilots in the indus¬ 
try." Dykstra continued. "We also 
incorporated an inertial naviga¬ 
tional system, which records flight 
motion and enabled us to duplicate 
actual in-flight movement with the 
models for staged matte shots, or 


background photography. The im¬ 
pression of speed. which varies from 
300 miles |x*r hour to alxmt <>0.000 
miles per hour, comes from exposing 
in-flight film at varying frame rates 
and then playing it bac k at 21 frames 
jx*r second. It’s an awesome effect, 
tit'd into motion and cloud forma¬ 
tions." 

It’s a compliment to Apogee's rep¬ 
utation that dollar-consc ious pro¬ 
ducer Eastwood sought their services 
on the basis of obtaining the best 
work available*. “It was not a ’bid" 
situation." said ptoduc lion manager 
Bob Shepherd. By his estimate. Apo- 
gee ac ounted for perhaps 20°o of 
FI RE.FOX's screen time. 

With a budget of $IH million, as 
op|x>scd to$5 million for Eastwcxxl's 
last summer film. BROXGO BILLY. 
FIREFOX was the* kind of picture 
which, if allowed, could have gotten 
out of hand. Elastwood's |M»st ptoduc - 
tion assessment of his collaboration 
with Apogee and John Dykstra for 
the* important visual effec Is was typi¬ 
cally laconic. "I met the guy, tcxik a 
look at lus operation and gave him 
the job.” he said. “I haven't been dis¬ 
appointed." □ 




15 

















COMING 




pure based and prepared according lo 
photographs taken of c lassie mutila¬ 
tions. and shipped to the location, 
where they were stored in refrigerated 
trucks until needed. 

Special and mechanical effects 
were coordinated by Johnny Burke 
(MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE). Steve 
Galich and Gary King. Theii work 
iiu luded rifles with laser sights (regu¬ 
lation Gentian Mini-Ms), surgical 
lasers and a e ustornized Bell 204 heli¬ 
copter —something of a c ross between 
(la plain Nemo’s Nautilus and a Viet¬ 
nam gunship. with a circular metal 
c attle prod, infrared cameras and spe¬ 
cial spollamps—used to silently 
swoop down to collect the tran- 
<|uili/ed cattle*. 

Aside from opening his eyes to the 
extensive nature of the* mute prob¬ 
lem, Rudolph's research lelt him 
with a towering empathy for the vic¬ 
timized animal itself. "W hen you fol¬ 
low a cow’s life from birth to death." 
he* said, "you discover that it is one of 
the really tragic animal existences on 
this planet. They live only to sene 
man. whether in the form of milk or 
Ire-el. Our film makes a simple anal¬ 
ogy between e owsand human Ixings. 
We’re not only physiologically sim- 
ilar. but just as plentiful and tela- 
lively unguarded. Either of us would 
sec*m to make a pretty easy taigel (for 
the experiments in the film |." 

Adding that evidence* overwhelm¬ 
ingly indicates that a sophisticated 
|M>wei is c ounce ted to the* mutes, 
Rudolph noted that such evidence is 
no less s|k c illative than u was when 
the* research liegan. "I don’t think, 
though, that the government is 
behind it. Teenage lei legacies from 
sjxice would lie much mole full to 
imagine. 

'Bui no one is going locate h these* 
guys, whoever lhe\ aie." Rudolph 
concluded. “They’re just too slick. 
However. some day they’ie going to 
make a mistake, and someone is 
going to Im- there. 1 hope it's someone 
who is inspired by our film.’’ O 


Endangered Species 

hi a story direct from the tabloid headlines, 
Alan Rudolph asks: Cows now, people later? 


By Kyle Counts __ 

Truth can often lx* stranger than 
fiction, but ENDANGERED SPE¬ 
CIES is a film that tries to be stranger 
than truth. Directed and co-written 
by Alan Rudolph (WELCOME TO 
L.A.), the $10 million mystery- 
thriller was inspired by more than 
10,000 real cattle mutilations that 
have been dexumented during the 
|xist 15 years. 

The Alive Enterprises production, 
starring Robert Crich (VEGAS). 
Mai in Kantei and JoBetlr Williams, 
is schedulc*d for release this Octohei 
tluoiigh MGM. 

The phenomenon of animal muti¬ 
lation dates liae k to l%7. when a 
three-year-old Ap|xdex>sa horse named 
Skippy was found dead on a ranch 
near Alamosa. Colorado. Ihehoises 
skin had been stripped away, the 
hhxxl from its Ixxly drained, key sex¬ 
ual organs were missing and strange 
markings covered the carcass—char¬ 
acteristics which later came to be* 
known as a "c lassie mute." 

Local authorities claimed the 
animal had Ix-en strue k by lightning 
and then consumed by predators 
(blowflies. coyotc*s and birds), but the 
ranc her felt that Skippy’s death was 
due to anything but natural causes. 
Sue h inutec ases—involv ingdeei ,c at¬ 
tle. clogs and horse s—have since been 
re|x>rted in nearly 30 states. 

The film’s narrative is based on an 
original story b\ Adman King and 
journalists Judson Klinger and 
Richard C. Wcxxls. The journalists 
s|x*nt t wc»years scout ing ten Western 
slates in ilie* heart of mute country, 
interviewing law enforcement offi- 
c lals, tanc hersand sc ieniists, and com¬ 
piling data and photographs about 
the unsolved phenomenon. 

The* scnpt lor ENDANGERED 
SPECIES, co-authored by Rudolph 
and John Bindei.diamaii/es the jour¬ 
nalist’s findings, examining the* most 
|H»pulai theories liehind the decade- 
long mystery—Satanic cults. CEO's 
and theoffic lal government jxisition. 
natural predatots— and draws its own 
s|m*c ulalivc* com lusion pointing to a 
right-wing opeiaiion involved in 
gc-ini warfare. The film's warning: 
Cows now. |x*ople later. 

“It’s inteiesting to note that the 
earl\ notoriety of the cattle mutila¬ 
tion phenomenon |leaked dm ing the 
Watergate* eta in the mid-70s." said 
Rudolph, a soft-s|x»ken protege of 
filmmakei Robeti Allman, and son 
of I V directoi Oscar Rudolph. "It 
was thus hm i<*d on the bae k |xigc*s of 
most news|iapers. and the sheer mag¬ 
nitude* of the* Stoiy never ic*ally sunk 
in. Today, the* story is reduced to 
liauuei headlines in junk news|>apets 
like* the Xatinnal Enquirer." 

home ally, the* plot ol ENDAN- 
GEREl) SPECIES eallies the* flavor 
of corruption that characterized the 


PEPSI 


Watergate c*ra. “ This is a story about 
the abuse of |xnver," said Rudolph. 
"The power that is currently mutilat¬ 
ing cattle could easily shift its f e m us to 
|M*oplc. In many ways, this is also a 
protest film. The twist is that all of 
our characters are rather conservative 
in their leanings; there isn’t a liberal 
in the bum h. They*’re all fighting for 
basically the* same thing, except that 
some of them go t<x> far—they abuse 
their power, choosing to ignore the 
greater implication of the actions 
they provoke." 

Headlining the cast is Robert 
Crich of TV’s VEGAS, who plays a 
cynical ex-cop fresh from a dry-out at 
an alcohol rehabilitation center. Eans 
of the now-defunct ABC series may lx* 
hard-pressed to recognize l T ric h. who 
lost 20 |xHindsand aged himself with 
greying temples. Also start ing is new¬ 
comer Marin Kantei (recently seen in 
the TV movie SKOKIE ) as hie delin- 
cmerit teen-age daughtet. and JoBeih 
Williams (POLTERGEIST. STIR 
CRAZY), portraying a she till who 
links horns with Crich and Kantei 
when the y arrive in Colorado to visit 
a lixal journalist, played b\ Paul 
Dooley (POPEYE). Also featured are 
veteran e hatac ter ae tois I laity ( -uey 
Jr., Gene Elvans. singer-ac lot Hoyt 
Ax ton (HIE BLACK STALLION) 


and Peter Coyote, now apjiearing in 
Steven Spielberg’s E. I 

Rudolph and producer Carolyn 
Pfeiffer (who handled production 
c holes on Rudolph’s last film, the* 
rock and roll comedy, ROADIE.) 
scouted locations in nearly 100 towns 
throughout the West before dec iding 
on Bulfaloand Sheridan in Northern 
Wyoming. Weeks prior to the start of 
principal photography, an MGM 
c tew. production manager Ke n Swor 
and production designer Trevor Wil¬ 
liams (HIE CHANGELING. FU¬ 
TURE W( >RI D) went northtotrans- 
form the communities into proper 
Cdoiado towns, and to lx*gin con¬ 
strue lion work on an abandoned mis¬ 
sile silo exterior, whie h serves as the 
germ warfare mercenaries’ headquar¬ 
ters. For interior shots, a sugai mill 
factory in Longmont. Colorado was 
redressed. 

At this time, wrangler Jim Sp.ihn 
was hus\ acquiring and training the 
animals foi the film’s background 
scenes and siinits. the most dramatic 
of whie h involved a bull set aliic* in a 
barn. Sp.ihn worked closely with 
American Humane Association rep- 
ic*sentative Ed Hart, who also super¬ 
vised the use of animal carcasses for 
the “mute" sequences. Cattle des¬ 
tined for the slaughterhouse were 


Alan Rudolph (far left) and crew line up a shot on the streets ol Buffalo. Wyoming. 


Right: Sheriff “Harry" Purdue (JoBeth 
Williams) examines a dead cow. which 
exhibits many of the signs of a classic 
“mute," including surgical-like cuts, 
missing organs, and no blood. Above: 
This customized helicopter is used to 
swoop down on the cattle. Silent black 
helicopters are frequently mentioned in 
reports of actual animal mutilations. 


16 















THE ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK RECORDING 

FROM THE PARAMOUNT PICTURE 
"STAR TREK” II THE WRATH OF KHAN: - 



PRODUCED BY JAMES HORNER 


ON ATLANTIC RECORDS AND CASSETTES. 



RECORDED DIGITALLY 

















Bakshi & Frazetta go together like Sword & Sorcery 




mut h as I hired a man’s mind. We’d 
go Imc k and forth, feeding eat h other 
ideas, and it’s been so good dial ii 
piohahlv mined me as far as working 
alone in die luiiire.” 

lot Fra/el la. die transition from 
canvas to celluloid wasa natural pro- 
gression. “All my life I’ve been telling 
stories ihiough my work, capturing 
emotion through sheer artistry.” Fra¬ 
zetta explained. “That talent lent 
itself lo diis film easily, because it’s 
action-orientated. In many ies|»etts. 
FIRF. ANI) ICE is a first. I lie whole 
appro.it Ii is different fiom other ani¬ 
mated films I’ve seen. Flic color is 
Ixitct. and the at lion is slit ker. more 
believable—brutal, but tasteful, like 


by Kyle Counts 


Nearly HO |m*ic etit of the work on 
FIRE AND ICE. a new animated 
adventure by Ralph Bakshi (AMERI¬ 
CAN 1*01*) and fantasy illustrator 
Frank Fra/etta. has been completed. 
“Technically speaking, Frank and I 
have finished the film.” the weary, 
but exuberant Bakshi re|x>rted from 
his Sun Valley studio. Fra/etta has 
since gone home to Pennsylvania. 
“Basically, tilt* animation portion is 
complete.” said Bakshi, “except ftir 
some retakes. The mechanical pro¬ 
cess of inking and painting, however, 
will require another two to three 
months of work.” 

Scheduled for a Christmas release 
at the earliest (Bakshi is now talking 
with prospective distributors), FIRF. 
AND ICK tells the story of a beautiful 
princess named Teegra and a jiower- 
Iill young barbarian. Lain, who 
encounter stibhuinans and prehis- 
toric creatures on a savage, hut 
resplendent planet. Fra/etta and Bak¬ 
shi wrote the story treatment at Fra- 
zetta’s Pennsylvania farm in the 
summer of 1980. Marvel (armies’ Roy 
Thomas and Gerry Conway then 
fashioned it into a screenplay, work- 
ing carefully to preserve the spirit of 
Frazetta’s Sword fc Sorcery artwork. 

The privately financed project— 
Fra/etta's first, Bakshi’stenth—wasa 
refreshing c hangeof pace, .is well asa 
learning experience fot both men. 
“When Frank first walked in here," 
said Bakshi. I was terrified that we’d 
argue or not see eye to eye about the 
artistic end of the film. My only other 
collaboration with an artist was a 
disaster. But Frank understands every* 
as|M*t t of art. I (is adaptability to film 
was amazing. I didn’t hire an artist so 


A key sketch by Frank Frazetta. which helped define the film s style and action. 


Artist Frank Frazetta and animation film director Ralph Bakshi. 


my paintings. It’s got a certain feeling 
of sensuality; when it moves, there’s a 
fluidity to it. You might say it’s a 
su|x*r-comic book approac h with an 
either-world quality.” 

Bakshi agreed that the* animation 
in FIRE AND ICE was different— 
even better—than anything lie had 
done before. “When you work with 
an artist of Frank's caliber, your film 
c ant help hut lielietler asa lestilt. I he 
level of animation in FIRF. AND l(IE 
is the Ik-si ol all my films; Frank’s 
raised the standard of drawing in m\ 
studio 1.000 |>eiccnt. Bakshi alone is 
okay, hut Bakshi alone isn’t Frazetta. 
What happened to Corben and 
Wrighlsoti in HEAVY ME I AI. is an 
example of what can go wrong in a 
collaboration. I didn’t sc-e them in the* 
film. You'll see Frazetta in FIRF 
AND ICE, I assure you." 

Actually. Fra/etta did little ol the* 
actual animation on the film. As co- 
producer and co-director with Bak¬ 
shi. lie* supervised the* crew ol anima¬ 
tion artists, de c iding where the piob- 
lemsexisted in a panic ular sequence*, 
disc ussing it with the* crew and Bak¬ 
shi. and showing them how to 
ac hieve the* required look. I ledid not 
sit at the boards in the* traditional 
sense*, but prepared numerous kev 
drawings foi both narrative move¬ 
ment and Imc kgtounds. Pleased with 
his own work. Frazetta said the Imc k- 
ground paintings alone would lie 
worth the* price of admission. 

Asdircc tor. Bakshi showed hisstaff 
tec lime ally how to ac hieve the* move¬ 
ments that were discussed earlier. 
When Fra/etta came in the next day, 
Bakshi would show him what had 


been ptoduced. and refinements 
would In* made*. 

Bakshi is still trying to |x*rfec t the 
same rotoscoping techniques that 
audience's disliked m earlier films, 
including AMERICAN POP and 
LORD OF I I IF RINGS. Even here 
Fra/etta’s influence was fell. Bakshi 
and Fra/etta served as co-directors; 
Fta/etta instruc ted the ac tots in move¬ 
ment to c reate believable ac lion. "No 
one understands ac tion Im-iici than 
Fra/etta,” Bakshi said “II he had 
never done a single chawing fot the 
film, his imprint would still Ih-oii it." 

Flic* live-ac tion shooting—used as 
an aid to the rotoscoping—was done 
on Hollywood sound stages. Make¬ 
shift propsand tiers wereconsiriic ted 
from scaffolding. 1 lie heavier ac tion 
stunts were filmed m Bronson Canyon, 
in the I lolly wood Hills, thesiteof the 
old Flash Gordon serials. For an out¬ 
door sequence involving a giant 
lizard, a truck—its hood o|x*ned to 
resemble the refrtile’s snapping jaws— 
was literally attac ked by the actors. 
Flic* live-action footage* is blown up. 
frame* by frame, into8"xl0"stillsfot the* 
artists to work with. 

“I’m one for realism.” said Fra¬ 
zetta. “I'nlikt* most films, where the 
ac tion isc horeogra plied, we dev iseda 
technique using rolled-up newspa¬ 
pers. Flieac tors could follow through 
with their blows and makecontac t in 
the* battle scenes. Flic* nc*wspa|x*rs 
represented axes and c lulls, and we 
told the Ix'itct athletes not to hesitate 
or pull (lic it punches, whic h I think 
the* audience can s|m>i. When rolled- 
up newspa|Mi me t head, there wasan 
instinc live reac tion that is totally dif¬ 
ferent from a gu\ making believe lie 
was hit. or one who was hit softly. 
Ralph and I agree, this is the way it 
should look. 

“If you really observe* the* drama of 
lib*.” Fra/etta continued, “you know 
that the* way someone moves is quite 
different from what Hollywood 
movies would have you lM*lie*ve. My 
input was to show how thee liatac ters 
should reac t in a standard moment of 
violence or feat —logic ally.asop|M>scd 
to the* liokev John Wayne idea of 
ac tion. All these little nuances are in 
the film. We’ve trap|x*d a kind of 
reality new toanimation.” 

Bakshi c ited an example. “We 
show this young barbarian trapped 
oil a ire-e limb,’’ he sard, “and there’s 
five subhum.ms with knives below. 
Suddenly, a pterodactyl flies In. and 
the* kid jumps on it to esca|x*. It's a 
fantasy situation, hut you’ll believe it 
when you see it.” 

Casting agencies provided the 
young men and women lc*i the 
tequiicd roles ol barbarians, subhu¬ 
mans and slave girls. Those inter- 


PHOTO BY KYLE COUNTS 














animation that is new to Kakshi. The* 
figure's are darker, richer—not the 
usual pink flesh tones traditionally 
used inanimation. They seem round¬ 
er and more three-dimensional, with 
an added dimension of detail. One 
noticed subtle shifts of expression on 
leegra’s panicked fare. Most signifi¬ 
cantly. the characters* lxxl\ move¬ 
ments convincingly create the illu¬ 
sion that these are living, breathing 
Ireings. trot simply colored ptgmcttts 
on transparent cels. 

1'he scene also shows a sparer Bak- 
shi, one less concerned with Wagner¬ 


ian battles between brawling hordes. 
“FIRE AND ICE is definitely trot an 
epic." he emphasized. “I did art epic. 
LORI) OF THE RINGS had 10.000 
soldiers marching to the wall, and 
everybixly yawned. Frank's a great 
believer in simplic ity—look how few 
figures he uses in his paintings. 
LORD OF THE RINGS taught me 
that numbers don’t mean a thing. 
What Frank and I have done is re¬ 
addressed ourselves to the idea of 
making a film alxnrt |x*ople—Frank 
Frazetta's |x*oplc. 

"I have marry scars," Bakslii said. 


"A lot of stuff I've clone was hype for 
Holly wood’s sake, so I could sell 
another movie. We’re very proud of 
what we’ve done here, and I lio|x'ihat 
|x ople don’t confuse love of some¬ 
thing with arrogance or hype. Frank 
has reinstated my belief in my own 
abilities, and he says I’ve given him 
new creative life too. I’d forgotten 
what it was like to have fun making a 
movie—all the fights, the non-re¬ 
leases. This is the best time I’ve ever 
had m my life. With FIRE AND ICE. 
I think I’ve finally made it out of the 
ghetto." □ 


i ,uvv uou i uui tu pcniiinii^ j uutlv IUI 11 tv 

film which “alone are worth the price of 
admission.” per Frazetta. Right: The 
film’s heroine. Princess Teegra. on 
the lookout for danger in the swamp. 


viewed were asked to read from tIre- 
script and go through a series of 
ac tions to sec how well they moved. 
Hundreds of women—all professing 
to Ik* the* perfect "Frazetta girl.” 
whether or not they actually knew 
what a Frazetta girl was—auditioned 
for the pivotal role of Teegra. 

"We went so fat as have the* girls 
stand against a life-size drawing of 
Teegra to see how they Idled in the* 
outline." said Frazetta. "But what 
you see on the screen, you can thank 
the artists for. No girl could look like 
that, and even if she did. she’d proba¬ 
bly lx* a mumbling idiot.” 

• Bakslii and Frazetta insist that ruin- 

scoping isn’t just tracing movement 
from film. They ran a short test of 
thcii work to illustiate how nine h the 
raw fcxitage is redrawn and strength¬ 
ened by the artists. Tire short picccof 
film first shows a mcxlestly attrac live, 
bikini-dad actress playing Teegra 
darting around boxes and jumping 
over pieces of wcxxl on an otherwise 
barren sound stage as several well- 
built men in loin c lotlis c based after 
her. Seconds later, dice omplctcdani¬ 
mation of the scene appeared. Flic* 
ac tress had been transformed into a 
voluptuous Frazetta maiden, scurry¬ 
ing through a swamp to elude a 
group of subhumanoids. 

Even in a scant .10 seconds of film, 
one could see a textural quality to the- 




19 




















In a giant, empty , deiaymg building 
which had once housed thousands, a 
single TV set hawked its wares to an 
uninhabited room. 

The ownerless rum had, before World 
War Terminus, been tended and 
maintained. Here had been the suburbs 
of San t ram isco, a short ride by 
monorail rapid transit; the entire 
peninsula had ( haltered like a bird tree 
with life and opinions and complaints, 
and now the watchful owners had either 
died or migrated to a colony world. 
Mostly the former; it had been a costly 
war ... 

—from Do Androids Dream of 
Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dic k 


h 


Philip k. Dic k s bleak vision 
% M of the near-future, the world’s 
cities have become decaying hulks, 
all but abandoned by those who have 
survived “World War Terminus’* in 
favor of off-world colonies. 

1 fowever, in 70mm and six-trac k 
stereo, an empty c ity is just so inuc h 
glass and cone tele. So direc tor Ridlev 
Sc ott and a stall of designers created 
then own version of the* near-future: 
dark, garish, crowded, and her tic. It’s 
probably the most brilliantly- and 
completely-realized future society ever 
captured on film. Lhecrew playfully 
dubbed it "Ridlev v die*.’’ in honor of its 


“father.” 

While* Ridle v Scott drastically altered 
the sjx*c ifics of the* book’s setting, the 
flavot of Dic k’s San Francisco has lx*en 
remarkablv preserved in "Ridlev v ille”. 


In both the novel and the film, the cities 
are literally falling apart as the 
technological infrastructure crumbles 
away. Dic k called the resulting debris 
“kibble”; the crew of BLADF. 
RUNNER called it “retro-trash.” 

At press time, it was still tooearlv to 
even guess at BLADE RI NNER s 
critical reception. But at the very least, 
the film is a visual feast, a tribute to 
Scott, production designer Lawrence 
Pauli and effects direc tor Douglas 
Trumbull, and the talented crews who 
worked for each of them. 

The film will also serv e as a final 
tribute to the late Philip Die k. who died 
just weeks before a final print was 
completed. It was Dick’s dystopian 
v ision that started it all. of course. 

Sadly, it was a v ision the author nev er 
had a chance to sex* recreated on film. 



# 

This incredible industrial complex- 
known as the Hades Landscape, and 
dubbed Ridley s Inferno'' by the 
crew—was actually a 13 x18 table-top 
miniature built and photographed at 
Douglas Trumbull s EEG effects studio 
Shooting the internally-lit brass and 
foam miniature through mineral oil- 
vapor smoke gives the tremendous 
illusion of depth. The huge buildings in 
the background are supposed to be 700 
stories tall; in actuality, they were small, 
self-lit transparencies attached to the 
miniature. For the final composite 
(inset right), additional elements were 
added, including front-projected 
flames: double-exposed smoke; and a 
flying car. which itself required several 
motion-control passes to photograph. 




21 











Die k was one of (he handful of 
American science fiction writers to 
Ik* highly praised by mainstream 
critics for his literary abilities. And 
one of (In* highest points of his 
career was Do Androids Dream of 
Electric Sheep? 

“It’s one of my favorite novels,” 
Dick said. “Although it’s essen¬ 
tially a dramatic novel, the moral 
and philosophical ambiguities it 
dealt with are teally very profound. 
Hie book stemmed from my basic 
interest in the problem of differen¬ 
tiating the authentic human being 
hom the reflexive machine, which 
I called an android. In my mind, 
‘android’ is a metaphor lot people 
who are physiologically human. 


Above: A color rendering of "The City," circa 2019, by designer Syd Mead (inset, posing with a futuristic parlcing meter). The 
illustration features many elements recreated in the film's sets, including two of his vehicle designs, electronic traffic indicators 
(far left), store displays that overhang the sidewalk, signs lettered in Japanese, and huge barley-shaped columns. The 
unusual X-shaped intersection is based on the huge New York Street set on the back lot of The Burbank Studios. Right: 
Although Mead designed the parking meter, the shocking warning label was the work of illustrator Tom Southwell. 


P 

0 hilipK. Dick’s 
novel. Do An¬ 
droids Dream of 
Electric Sheep?, 
was definitely a 
child of its limes. 
First published 
in 1968. during 
the very height 
THE NOVEL of the Vietnam 
war. it detailed 
the adventures of Ric k Deckard, a 
futuristic bounty hunter tracking 
down a cadre of murderous an¬ 
droids; at a further remove, the 
bcM>k was an impassioned exami¬ 
nation of modern mankind’s emo¬ 
tional sterility. “It was written,” 
the late author recalled, “during a 
time when I thought we had 
become as bad as the enemy.” 

Philip R. Dick was born in Chi¬ 
cago in 1928. He lived most of his 
life in California, holding down a 
variety of <k1c1 jobs (including a 
classical music disc jockey) while 
developing his writing career. Die k 
was nothing if not prolific. His 
first story, “Beyond Lies the W’ub.” 
was published in Planet Stories in 
July 1952. The next year, 28stories 
ap|x*arcd with the Dick byline, and 
1954 saw him publish an addi¬ 
tional 28. By 1955, Dick had cut 


Ixic k on short stories (he ultimately 
wrote 110 of them) to author Solar 
Lottery, his first novel, which is 
still in print and which remains 
one of his best selling titles. 

Die k was nearly as prolific when 
it came to novels—he wrote more 
than 40. From 1964 to 1969, for 
example (a |x*ri<xl many ex|x*rts 
consider Dick’s finest literary 
stretch), no fewer than 16 of his 
lxx>ks were published, titles whic h 
inc luded Dr. liloodmonty: Or /low 
Me Got Along After The Bomb, 
Galactic Tot ilealer. Clans of the 
Alphane Moon, and, of course. Do 
Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? 

Despite his productivity. Dick’s 
output was far from hackwork. 
The Man in the High Castle, a story 
of an alternate universe where the 
Japanese and Germans won World 
War II and split America down the 
middle as Ixxity, won the Hugo 
award in 1972. Flow My Tears, The 
Policeman Said garnered the* John 
W. Campbell Memorial Award for 
lx*st novel of 1971. 

No c ine wrote* quite I ike Ph i lip K. 
Dick. Although most of his stories 
were set in a world recognizably 
our own. his viewpoint was so 
skewed by existential observation 
and idiosyncratic insight that 
anyone sampling his work over 
any periexl of time found their jx*r- 


ceptions of reality irrevocably 
altered. Not only was hedevastat- 
ingly unique, he jogged hisreadei- 
ship’s gray c ells as well. 

Die k achieved his first great cross¬ 
over success from the science fic¬ 
tion ghetto into the literary main¬ 
stream in the 1960s. with the coun¬ 
ter-c ulture’s enthusiastic embrac ing 
of such works as Faith of Our 
Fathers (in which Gexl is not dead, 
just insane), Vbik and The Three 
Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch 
(thought by many to lx* the LSD 
novel). 

Rut the drugs that were so much 
a part of ihecounter-c ullure move¬ 
ment had made inroads into Die k's 
habits. Although he had been virtu¬ 
ally ding free in recent years, his 
earlier experiments with LSD and 
reliance on large doses of amphet¬ 
amines ultimately may have hel|x*d 
destroy his health and led to his 
untimely death. “I icx>k so much 
speed,” Die k admitted, “because I 
had to support myself by writing 
fic tion. The only way I could do 
that was to write a lot of it.” 

Die k. however, lived long enough 
to enjoy a measure of his success. 
Lauded in Furo|x\ and the subjec t 
of numerous articles here in his 
own country (including a reveal¬ 
ing. highly recommended Rolling 
Stone cover story a few years ago), 


f 


22 






















but who behave in a non-human 
way." 

Du k first became interested in 
this problem while 1 doing tesc*arc h 
for The Man in the High Castle. 
Given access to original Gesta|x> 
dex uments at the* c losed stacks of 
the* University of California at 
Berkeley. Die k discovered diaries h\ 
SS men stationed in Poland. One 
sentence in |kii tic ul.u had a pro¬ 
found .die 1 ! t on the* author. 

"The sentence read. ‘We are kept 
awake at night by the cries of starv¬ 
ing children,*" Dick explained. 
“There was obviously something 
wrong with the man who wrote 
that. I later realized that, with the 
Nazis, what we were essentially 
dealing with was a defer live group 
mind, a mind soemotionallydefcc - 
live that the 1 word human could not 
lx* applied to them. 

“Worse." Die k continued. “I felt 
that this was not necessarily a 
solely German tiait. fhisdefie iency 
bad Ixrn ex|x>rted into the 1 world 
after Wot Id War II and could he 
picked up by |x a ople anywhere at 
any time. I wrote Do Androids 
Dream of Electric Sheep? during 
the Vietnam war. At the* time. I was 
revolutionary and existential 
enough to believe that these an¬ 
droid |x*rsonalities were so lethal, 
so dangerous to human beings, 
that it ultimately might become 
necessary to fight them. The prob¬ 
lem in killing them would then lx*: 
‘Would we not become like the an¬ 
droids in our very effort to wipe* 
them out?* *’ 

Enter Hollywood. 

In 1969. sir lie k by the 1 novel’s vis¬ 
ual and moral landscape 1 , direc tor 
Martin Scorsese and critic Jay 
Gxks showed interest in trans¬ 
forming the* lx>ok into celluloid, 
although the* lx>ok was never for¬ 
mally optioned. In 197*1. however, 
Dick was approached by the man 
who, six years later, would become 
the prime mover and shaker behind 
the book's eventual film adapta¬ 
tion— I lampion Fane her. 

Bom in 1938. ex-husband of 
actress Sue Lyon (LOLITA), and a 
former ac tor himself with 10 fea¬ 
ture films and over a bundled TV 
credits (including “The Burning 
Girl" on ONE STEP BEYOND), 
Fanchcr had been writing scripts 
since he was a teenager. I fe had also 
made* a series of 8mm and Ihmm 
films, c eliminating in a prize-win¬ 
ning 35mm short, BEACH PARK¬ 
ING. But Franc her was not a big 
sc ietu e fic lion buff. In fact, he had 
only read two novels in the genre: 
Alfred Bester’s The Stars My Desti¬ 
nation and Dick's Do Androids 
Dream of Electru Sheep? 

“When I read Dick's novel, 
STAR WARS wasn't even a gleam 
in George Lucas' eye." Franc her 
said. “But at the same time there 
was the* smell of science fiction in 
II ollywood. After I’d finished 
Phil's lxM>k I realized that if there 
was ever going to lx 1 a serious film 
in this trend. I had just read the 



AUTHOR PHILIP K. DICK 


ffi was revolutionary and existential 
enough to believe that these ‘android ’ 
personalities were so lethal, so dangerous to 
human beings, that it ultimately might 
become necessary to fight them. ■■ 



source material. So with the 1 few 
dollars I had left in my |xx ket at the* 
lime, I took a stab at optioning the 
lxx>k." 

However. Fane her couldn’t 
seem to locate Dick. No one—not 
even Dick’s literary agents— 
seemed to know where to locate 
him. Fortunately, a chance en¬ 
counter with Ra\ Bradbury (who 
happened to be carrying an address 
lxx»k with Die k’s phone number in 
it) brought Fane herand the author 
together. 

Their first meeting was amiable, 
as were subsequent encounters. N et 
in the* process. Fane bet realized 
that his dream of optioning Die k's 
novel had become sidetracked. 
"Although we got along very well. 
I had the 1 feeling that Phil thought I 
was some sort ol Hollywood 
hustler.*' Fane her explained. “I got 
the* impression that Dick was not 
only reluctant to get involved. Inn 
also inc reasingly reluc lain to have 
that particular book done as a 
film." 

“1 don’t think I iampton realized 
I was as naive about Hollywood as 
he* was." Dick later recalled. “I 
don't think he ever understcxxl that 
when it came to Hollywood, I 
cringed. I had an automatic flinch 
reaction. Putting it on an anthro- 
)M>logical basis, I represent the tribe 
of novelists and short story writers, 
while Hollywcxxl represents the* 
tribe that makes movies. I It Hiked at 
their tribe, and their c ustomscom¬ 
pletely baffled me. I’m sure they 
looked on me with the same 
confusion." 


K. Die k IxMik?’ " 

Encouraged, kelly proceeded to 
do just that. I le first took the* novel 
to producer Mic hael Deeley.a man 
who had cut his cinematic ttrth 
editing the* old British-made 
ROBIN HOOD television scries, 
before moving on to become head 
of EMI and theOsc ar-winning pro¬ 
ducer of such films a THE DEER 
HUNTER The first time Kelly 
approached him. Deeley said no 
thanks, because lie felt Die k's com¬ 
plex concepts would not easily 
translate to film. 

However. Fanchcr and Kelly 
tried again. Fanchcr wrote an 
eight-page treatment which so 
impressed Deeley that he encour¬ 
aged the* two to come up with a 
working screenplay. “I hadn’t ever 
intended to write the* screenplay 
myself." Fanchcr explained, "but 
my girlfirend at the* time convinced 
me that this was the only way to get 
the* project off the* ground. It took 
me nearly a year to write, but when 
I was finished Ke lly tcxik the script 
bae k to Deeley and lie loved it." 


Discouraged. Fane her decided to 
abandon tlu- projec t. What the ex¬ 
actor had not known was that the 
lxM>k had already been optioned, by 
Herb Jaffe Associates. RoImii Jaffe 
would, in fac t. be the first jx*rson to 
actually write a screenplay of the 
novel—a scenario that Die k loathed. 

“1 le took the* novel and turned it 
into a comedy s|x>of. something 
along the lines of GET SMART." 
Die k said. "Heeven wrote it tinder 
a jx’ii name. It was so terribly done I 
couldn’t believe it was a shooting 
script." Perhaps realizing their 
approac h was hardly appropriate. 
Jaffe* Associates let the book’s 
option drop in 1977. 

Flic- prosjx-ct of turning Dick’s 
novel intoa motion pic tureseemed 
doomed. Then, suddenly, in 1978, 
Fane her found himself back in the 
pic ture. "I was alxnit to go on a 
long trip, when I ran into an ac tor 
friend of mine, Brian Kelly, who 
had ambitions of Ix'coming a pro¬ 
ducer. Remembering my expe¬ 
rience with Die k. I told him, 'Why 
don't you try optioning this Philip 


DOWNTOWN L. A. 

in 2019 (below) is a 
dirty, crowded mob 
scene, as concep¬ 
tualized by director 
Ridley Scott, produc¬ 
tion designer Lawrence 
Pauli and illustrator 
Syd Mead. It's also 
* wet (thanks to the 
constant acid-rain), 
which accounts for 
the umbrellas. Inset: 
Scott positions two 
of the punkish extras. 
























rjriih Mie had 
Devle-y on Ixiaiel 
the projeri was 
given a tenta¬ 
tive go-ahead: 
Fancher would 
write the sc ript 
and. along with 
Kelly, serve as 
executive pro¬ 
ducer. As Dee- 
lev began shopping the project 
(tenatively titled IIIK ANDROID) 
around to a number of studios. 
Fancher completed several screen¬ 
play drubs, each version chitting 
farther and farther away from 
Die k's original story. 

In Die k’s novel.set in 1992, De*e k- 
atd is a Ixmnty hunter with the* San 
Francisco police force, tracking 
down renegade androids illegally 
on Faith. I lisjobiscomplicatedby 
the newest model, the “Nexus-6", 
whic h looks and acts just like* a te*al 
person. Fight of these* top of the* 
line mexlels are on the* loose*; De e k- 
ard's superior kille*el two In-fore 
being seriously wounded by a 
third. Deckard must destroy the 
remainder, as well as contend with 
his new-found romantic feelings 
loi Rac had. herself an android. 

Although iheandroid love-inter¬ 
est and the concept of the "Nexus- 
6“ androids were retained, other 
crucial concepts of Dick's work 
were scTapjxd by Fancher, ine hid¬ 
ing the* preoccupation with re*al 
animals. 

“It was never intended,except in 
the first draft, to stay close* to the 
novel," explained Fancher. “The 
lrook was really only a jumping off 
point, and the* various chubs of my 
scripts eventually took on lives of 
their own. Beside-s. the whole |>oint 
of my interpretation of the book 
was of a man who had discovered 
his consc ience in the course of his 
search foi these androids. I also 
thought of it in terms of a love- 
story, the* growing bond between 
Dcckard and Rachael. In (he* final 
analysis, there was very little of 
Die k’s book in my screenplay.“ 

By the* time Fane he*i had com¬ 


pleted his screenplay. Die k’s philo¬ 
sophical treatise had evolved into 
what director Ridley Scott later 
dubbed “a daik mystery." I lie- 
story is set 10 yearsin the future, but 
life in the* year 2010 is still muc h 
like our own )M*ti<xl—allx it some¬ 
what eliitie-r. more crowded and 
much more dangerous. Off-plunc*! 
colonization is encouraged, and 
genetic enginerring has advanced 
to the |x>int where*ae tuul “people" 
(complete with implanted, uitifi- 
cial memo! ies)aic capable of being 
manufactured by corporations. 

These artificial humans aren't 
robots in the* traditional sense, but 
genetic constructs whose sole dif¬ 
ference from humans is verifiable- 
only through a se*riesof psycholog¬ 
ical tests employing a polygraph- 
type device called the* Voight- 
kumpff machine. Hie only othe-r 
difference is a "factory-installed" 
disease that kills the androids after 
a four-year life s|kin. 

I he androiels are used for high- 
lisk jobs on planetary colonie-sor .is 
futuristic soldiers. Although 
c*e|uip|xd with heightened physi¬ 
cal and mental capabilities, they 
are the* se*cond-c lasse iti/ensof the ii 
times, and they occasionally at- 
tempt toescajx* the ir servitude and 
blend in with humanity. When 
they do. spec ially trained cops— 
like- Rie k De e kaiel—are* relied on to 
“retire" the “skin-jobs." 

Panther's script details De*e k- 
ard’s search for the re negades, a 
epiest on which lie* encounters 
Tyreil (whose* massive corporation 
produced the* artificial humans). 
Sebastian (an eccentric genius 
who, significantly, isafflic ted with 
a natural aging disease), and with a 
not-so-hostile android, Rac hael, 
who becomes bis mistress. 

Ultimately. Deckard uncovers 
the mystery- and terminates the* 
androids, but not Ix-fote his moral 
conscience has lx*e*n stiiied by the- 
cpiandry of his profession. But 
what about the girl? In Fancher’s 
version of the* screenplay, she* kills 
herself rather than face her inevita¬ 
ble four-year death sentence. It 
would lx-one*of many story |x>ints 
that would change Ix-fore filming 



THE SCRIPT 


When six replicants are discovered loose in Los Angeles. Gaff (Edward James 
Olmos) and an unidentified uniformed officer recruit the services of retired blade- 
runner" Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), who d much rather eat his bowl of noodles. 



was completed. 

In Marc h 1980, on the* stre ngth of 
FancheTs screenplay, Deeley was 
able* to entice Ridley Scott to join 
the* project (now title*el DANGER¬ 
OUS DAYS) as its director. With 
Scott’s track record (ALIEN re¬ 
turned about $100 million in re n¬ 
tals). Deelev was able* te> negotiate 
$. r > million worth of backing from 
Filmways Pictures. Unfortunately, 
no one thought to give the gexxl 
news to the* Ixxik’s author. 

“I got a call from Rolxit Jaffe 
one clay," recalled Philip Diek. 
“and the* fiist thing lie* told me was 
'Congratulations!* I said, 'For 
what?' It turned out that Jaffe had 
read about it in the trades, but no 
one* from the* produc tion < ompany 
had taken the* trouble toinfonn me 
of the* fae t. 

A bit latet 1 was having dinner 
with Ra\ Bradbury—it's funny 
how Ra\ ke pt (Hipping up in <xlel 
places eluting the* beginning of this 
thing—and I mentioned that some¬ 
one* was making a movie out of my 
IxMik. but Pel heard the* nc-wsonly 
hv reading about it in the trades. 
R.in started shouting and waving 
his aims—he* thought that this was 
totally unacceptable behavior. I 
just smiled and finished my drink. 
But as time went on. that.andothe*r 
things. Ix-gan to gnaw on me." 

I his initial snub was to lx* only 
the* fiist in a series of conflicts 
between Diek and the BLADE 
RUNNER compam. an on-going 
lend—that soon became public — 
wile h e nded only a shoit time 
before the* wr iter’s death. 

For one thing. Diek was upset 
with the* callous way lie- felt the* 
prexluction com (rally was treating 
him. “'They haven’t talked to meat 
all.’’ hc‘couiplaincd(huingprc‘p!o- 
deletion. “On the* othei hand. I 
haven’t died to get in touch with 
*them e*ithe*i!" As for Fane her. Die k 
hael not s(M>keu with him since the 
liist attempt to option (he Ixxik. 
But Du k had finally re-ad Fane hers 
sc ript. And he wasn't happ\. 

I lead two drafts of Fancher's 
screenplay, and it was terrible— 
corny and extremely maladroit 
throughout." Die k said. ’* I hey 
were on the level of PHILIPMAR- 
I.()\VF MEETS THE S I FPF< )RD 
WIVES. I did not approve of what 
it trie-el to elo. and I don't think it 
accomplished what it (tied todo. In 
other words, they aimed low and 
failed at what the y aimed at. 

“Fane her hael concentrated on a 
Im id collision bc-twe-en luimanand 
android. I wasn't angered b\ what 
had been cut from my novel, be¬ 
cause* I know you can’t can tians- 
fer everything to the screen. What 
was bad was the* execution of tlie- 
script. Fancher had over-relied on 
the* cliche-ridden Chandle re scjue* 
figure*, and his sc ript ojx-ned with a 
hoary voice-over, like*: It was a dirty 
town. It was a dirty job. Somebody 
hud to do it. I was that somebody. My 
name's Dei hard.' I mean. My Gexl! 

“ Ilu* ending had that awful 


Cast & Credits 

% Uariwt Rim Hiilmrs rrlrasr |Thr I add 
C 4>.|. ft K£. Il l mins. In Coin*, wopr. 
7<hnm ind Dolby sirrm. ihrected by Rid- 
to Stnil. Ptodueed by Mitharl Drrlrs. 
Screenplay In tl am pio n Famhrr. llawd 
Proplrv Rased on the run rl "DoAndnnds 
Or rum of TJertru SheepT" b\ Philip K. 
IMtk. (.mematografsher. Ionian ( iwiiii- 
Hrth. Purdue turn designer. Lawrmtr (.. 
Pauli, Associate producer, l»m Ponrll. 
Mush by \ am»rlis Su/rents mg editor. 
Tern Raw lino- Executive producers. 
Brian krll*. Hampton Famhrr. Sprttal 
photographic efferts supenxutrs. Douglas 
I rumbull. Ri« hard Yuritith. Das id Dim. 
Production rxetulur. Kalhrtinr llalirt. 
Cm# frroductum manager. John %V. Rt>»c- 
rtv /»/ assistant directors. Nrwton Arnold. 
Prtrr C nrnbrrjc- (.m/uiim b\ C Jurln 
knodr. Mitharl Kaplan. Art dim tor. 
Das id Smdrr. I isual futurist. Ssd Mrad. 
(lasting by Mikr Fmlon. janr Irinhrtic. 
Script supervisor. kuna Maria ejuiniana. 
Pmdut turn riHirdinator. Vitkir Alprr. 

I malum manager. Mitharl Nralr. Sound 
mixer. Butl Alprr. Set dec orators. Linda 
DrScmna. Tom kopdrn. la^ilr Fnuikm- 
hrimrr. Production illustrator%, Slirrman 
Labhs. Mrnloi HuHMWT. Tom SoUlhwHI. 
Assistant art dimtor. Sirphm Danr. V# 
designers. Tom llutlirld. Bill Skinnrr. 
(*rn( Pit krrll. ( hai lr> Brrrn. I on is Mann. 

I kit id klasvm. Property master, Trm 
Lrwiv Makeup artist. Man in Mrsimorr. 
Sfserial floor riferts supervisor, Trrn Fra- 
/rr. Spetial ef/erts tethnirians. Sirtr 
(.alit h. I iit*an Frarer. William C.urtiv 
(.after. Dit k Hare. Hest boy. Jnsrph W. 
C an lor a Jr. key grip, (am Crilfilh. Con- 
strurtwn loordinator. James F. ehmdorf. 
Stunt tootdmaiot. (an < umbs. Action 
props. Mikr Fink. Linda Flrtshrt. Still pho¬ 
tographer. Sit'phrn \ autehan. Production 
assistant. Bn an liasnrs. Editor. Martha 
Vakasluma. Assistant editor, William 
Zabala. English crew: first assistant editor. 
la-t llralrs. Sound editor. Prlrr Pmnrll. 
Dialogue editor, Mitharl llnpkinv Dub¬ 
bing mum, C.raham V. I tar Isom iPinr- 
Hood), (ant llum|»hrirs i I h it krnham). 
I t\ual displays bx Drram Qursl Int . tie r- 
Cron Microseope photographs by Das id 
St Inal, Esper sequente, tilmlrs 1- Lmlitr 
C hrrsman. Titles by Intralink Film 
(•raphit Uni|(n. 

SpermI photographu effects by FFC*. 
Direr tor of photography, Ifcnr Slrnart. 
OfUual photography uipenxun, Rnlirrt 
Hall. Cameramen. Ihm Bakrt. Riijm-h Bni* 
wn. Cilm C amphrll. ( harln (aiwln. 
Hat id llardhm(rr. Rtmaltl lamK». I im- 
irtht MiIIukIi. John Sray. Matte artist. 
Maiihr* Vuritith. iddhottal nut tie artist, 
Rim <<> e.iolfrr. Assistant matte artist. 
Mithrlr Mom. Matte photography by, 
Rnbrrl Bailr>. Tama 1 akaha\hi. Ihm 
Jarrl. Special tamera let human. Man 
llardim; Optua! line up, Philip Barbrrin. 
Rithard Ripplr. Animation and graphics, 
John Wa\h. hfleets illustrator. Tom Cran- 
liam. Special proferts mnsultant. Mat nr 
Smith. Miniature lethniemn. Boh Spur- 
link. .Imilunf rflnU editor. Mitharl 
Bakatnkav ( hief mttdelmaker, Mark Strt- 
ton. Modelmakers. Jrrr\ Mien. Sran 
(a\n, Paul ( in In. tx\lir Lkkrr. Thtmutt 
Firld. Vantr Frrdrritk. William C^orxr. 
hiiMophrr (.m;n, Robrrl JohnMon. 
Mitharl Mi Millian. Ilmmas Phak. Cliriv 
liifihrr Rmv Rohm Wiltm. Cmeierhni 
cion. (.mi|{r Polkini*hornr. Still lah, \ ir- 
i>il Mirano. Electronic and merhanual 
design by, Fvatn WctOOff. Tlertronic 
engineering by. C.ir* Me Murn. (.omfmter 
engineering by, Rit hard llnllandrr. Spe¬ 
cial engineering tonsultanls. Btul Flam. 
Iknid (.rafltm. Assistant to David Dryer. 
IxotaC.lavt. 


Drtkard. llarrivni Ford 

Bam .Kunjri llaurr 

Rat harl.Sran 1 ouiik 

(.all. lain aril JamrsOlmos 

Bnatii.M. Fmmri WaUh 

Pm.liar 1 1 Hannah 

SrhaMian.William Sandmon 

I ron.Britm Jamrs 

Tyrrtl ..Ji»r Turkrll 

Zhora. Joanna C awidy 

C Jirt*.(amr> llong 

lloldrn.Morjcan Pauli 

Brar. Krtin I honi|ison 

KaiM*t .John Fait*art! Alim 

Falfnlxun. lit P»kr 

( amlMMlian Lad*.Kimirn llirmhii(r 

Sushi Masirr.Rrrhrrl e Ita/aki 

Salrslad*.€airtrlsn Hr.Mirjian 


' 


t 


r 



























1 




What the best dressed folks will wear in 2019 


Charles Knode and Michael Kaplan avoid the old cliche of 
streamlined jump suits, and recall the flavor of the 1940s. 


Since tastes in fashions are so 
cyclical. Ridley Scott didn't want the 
residents of Ridleyville to be wearing 
anything too exotic or obviously 
"sci-fi." Instead, costume designers 
Charles Knode and Michael Kaplan 
went after a nostalgic mood, with just 
enough unusual design elements to 
suggest the near-future. 

The most obvious '40s touches in 
BLADE RUNNER are Harrison Ford's 
Bogart-esque trenchcoat and Sean 
Young's broad-shouldered business 
suit. Other elements were more 
contemporary in origin, including 
Rutger Hauer's black leather coat 
and Ford's eclectic wardrobe (Ford 
quipped that Deckard dresses like "a 
middle-aged Elivs Costello”). 

The film s costumes give subtle 
clues as to the nature of 2019’s 
society. Knode and Kaplan dressed 
many of the Oriental extras in tatters 
to denote their working-class status, 
while the well-to-do wore lavish 
outfits of fur. or with fur-trim, 
an obvious status symbol when 
there are no wild animals 
left on the planet 

But perhaps the most in¬ 
triguing costumes are the 
punk/new wave outfits worn 
by many of the extras on 
the New York Street set. 

According to Lawrence 

Below: Harrison Ford as “a 
middle-aged Elvis Costello.” 
sporting patterned shirt and 
narrow tie. Right: costumes 
sketches for Sebastian (I), a 
‘ street girt," and a heavily- 
armored police officer. 


Pauli, the DEVO look began with an 
art department Christmas party 
“There were presents scattered 
everywhere." Pauli recalled. "One 
was a wonderful calendar of stylized 
air-brushed portraits of new wave 
fashions—heavy rouge, different hair 
colors, and everything heavily 
accented Sometime later Ridley 
stumbled across the calender and it 
wasn't long before he had his head 
together with Charles Knode and the 
punk look became the style for Pris 
(Daryl Hannah) and some of the 
folks on the street ." 


BLADE RUNNER S 
costumes ran the 
gamut from the 
broad-shouldered 
look of the 1940s 
(Sean Young, top 
left), to the up- 
to-the minute 
punk look (Daryl 
Hannah, right: 
two extras, top 
center), to this 
very opulent 
oriental-style 
fur wrap 
(top right). 




25 





















w / can't emphasize enough that Ridley 
Scott is really the author of BLADE RUNNER. 

Other people had their input, too. Phil Dick 
probably didn't understand just how much 
of a collaborative art filmmaking is. mm 

T f CO SCREENWRITER DAVID PEOPLES 



iliint* where* Rue hael mere ifully. for 
everyone’s sake. dex*s herself in. .11 
whic h |x>i 111 Dec karcl grows in stat- 
ure from ihe ex|x*rience,” Die k 
added. *' ‘Crows 111 siainre’ is just a 
sohri(|uei for 1 lit* fad (hat he’s 
really glow 11 infinitely more c yni¬ 
cal. which is upparcntlx how these* 
I loll\ wood people* inaiure." 

I11 an article published in 1 lie* 
Fehruary la. 1981 issue of the Los 
Angeles Select Tl ’ (iuide , Die k 
lashed out at thedefic iene ieshesaw 
in (lie BLADF RLNNFR senpt. 
lie also went one step lari her. 
at lac king Sc oil s ALIEN saying. “a 
monster isa monster, a s|kic eshipis 
a spaceship, and thconh 1lungtl1.it 
saves this is its sjxe 1.1I e*ffe*c ts.“ 

It wasn’t long liefore* Die k’s arti- 
< le got bac k to the studios—in lac t. 
Dick scut it to them. “Alter not 
healing from anyone lot all that 
time.*’ Dick said. I suddenly got 
an obnoxious call from them one* 
afternoon, wherein they imme¬ 
diately said that they were angry 
that I had a copy ol the sc ript and 
demanded to know just where I had 
got it! I hey were* so hostile that I 
was tempted to tell them that I’d 
flc»ated ove r the studio in a helium 
lialloon. bored through theceiling. 
lowered a string and a piece* of 
chewing gum and lifted the sc tipi 
oil the nearest desk.’’ 

Of course. Dick received the 
script through normal channels, 
from producer Michael Drelrx’s 
lawyers. Jesus Christ! I’m the 
author of the novel on whic h this 
projrerty is based!’’ Die kexc lainied. 

Is is so strange* that I should havea 
copy ol the script? I lies also told 
me that I shouldn't Ix* using the* 
word ‘android.’ that this was dan- 
gerous talk |Kidle\ Scott detested 
the* term because lie* h it it was too 
cl idled). At that |>oiut I wondered 
whether I was talking toastudiooi 
the Mafia. So I told them. Shucks 
fellas. I am ao sorry I titled my Ixxik 
Do Androids Dream of Plectra 
Sheep? But >011 know, gosh . . . 
now I’m sort ol committed to it.’ 

Die k’s frontal assault on BI ADI 
RLNNFR had come shortly altei 
the* pied net ion had shifted from 
Film ways to 1 lie I.add Com|>any. 
1 oDic k’s relief, tlrec hange in man¬ 
agement was accompanied with a 
pleasant c hange in the* way lie* was 
treated, due in part to the an i\al of 
a second screenwriter. David 
People's. 

People's had co-written and eo- 
edited the Oscar-winning docu¬ 
mentary FHF DAY AFTER I RIN- 
ITY, and had written the Oscar- 


nominated short AR I I H R AND 
LILIA He was also involved in a 
rewrite ol REYENCF OF I MF 
JFDI when he* was tapped to 
rewrite Fane tier's screenplay. I lie 
timing might indie ate* that People's 
was hiought in to satisfx Dick. 
More like In . Fane her wasduiii|xd 
Ik*c ause ol conflicts with director 
Ridlex Scott. 

"Somewhere* along 1 Ire way. Rid¬ 
ley seemed to forget that I was not 
simply a hired writer on the pioj- 
c*c 1,’' Fanchcr said, “bill that I was 
also a ploducei and pait owner ol 
the film. We had Iiii.iIIn come to the 
l>oint where we just weren't get ting 
anywhere. Scott had some |xunis 
that he* wanted incorisolated into 
these 1 ipt. ideas that I ac lively resis¬ 
ted. I was only adding those* things 
that I h it were worthwhile. 

“Finally, in Noveinliei of 1980 . 
David Peoples was hiought in.** 
Fane her continued. “Surprisingly. 
the things I b it that couldn't Ix-put 
into the script—the* things Scott 
had w anted—were incot|x>rated h\ 


Peoples 111 tight, original, udmiru- 
hle ways. I really liked what he did 
with my script. I had little* to do 
with it aftei Peoples came on. just a 
cpiick touch-up te> two minor 
sc erres.*’ 

Peoples’ change’s to puncher's 
scenario also met with Dick’s 
enthusiastic approval. “Peojiles 
did a fiist-dass piece ol work/* 
Dick said, lie* smoothed out the 
dialogue and reworked certain 
scenes. And the* whole idea of the* 
replicants being infused with 
pyiogei 1.1.01 prematuie aging, was 
a new twist. By insertingthisangle. 
by dropping Rac hael’s suic idc*. by 
rethinking tin* final confrontation 
as a wonderful mewing sequence, 
and h\ any other number ol 
touches. People’s transformed the* 
sc 1 et npi. in into a Ixautilul. sym¬ 
metrical reinlorcement ol my oiigi- 
11 a I \xoi k.’’ 

Peoples insisted that hiscontti- 
hulion was overstated In the* 
author. I can’t emphasize enough 
that Riclle*N Scott is reall y the* 


author of BLADl RLNNFR.’’ lie- 
said. “Scott’s ideas and thrust were 
the* motive loicc* ol the I1I111. For 
instance, lie* always h it strongly 
about Duk's original animal 
theme, that a holocaust had wiped 
most ol the- teal animals out and 
that it u.is.m me ledihle-statussvm- 
Ih >1 to have one*. But nnc* just never 
lie ke*d that. 01 hei than insci ling the 
short Animoid Row sec*ne. and the* 
hit alxnit the*owl m I yiell’soffice. 

“Other |K*o|>le had theii input 
into the* lex ised se 1 ipt Hki." Peoples 
added. “Dick prohahlx didn’t 
undeistand just how much ol a 
collaborativeait (ilmmaking is. For 
exaiii|)le. Hairison Ford and Rut- 
gat Hauer contributed some \c*iy 
nice ideas conceiniiig theii dia¬ 
logue*. As lot Fane her—well. I 
think lie* s Im c 11 unlaii l\ dc*|iic ted as 
the* he*a\ n . I don’t know whic h ver- 
sioll ol these ll|>l Die k Ills! saw. hilt 
the one I read ivus just terrific. 

I gather I10111 Dick’s ic'action 
that lie fe lt m\ woik hael turned the¬ 
se 111 >t hac k towatdshisiioNel." Peo¬ 
ples said. We ll, that’s really just 
the* foie eol the01 igmal ideas in his 
Ixxik turning every Ixiely b.u k And 
let’s lace it— seii|>ls are alxxays 
changing. But even that draft had 
changed In the* linal days of 
sin Kiting.’’ 

Although he endorsed the new 
sc 11 1 >1. Die k still had c arise to buttle 
the BLADl RLNNFR brass. 1 
was offered a great dc*al ol money, 
and a cut in tlu* merchandising 
1 ights. il I would do a no\ c l i/at ion 
ol the screenplay. 01 il I would let 
someone like* Alan Dean Foster 
come* in and doit.” Die kcx| darned. 
“My agent figured that I would 
make alx nit $ 100,000 from the deal. 

"But jxut cil thisjjae kagereejuired 
the* suppression of my original 
ix >n 1 * 1 . and I said no.” Die k added. 

I hey got nastx again. Flies Ix'gan 
to threatcii to withdraw the* logo 
1 ights— nnc* wouldn’t lx* able to s.in 
that mv Ixxik was the* novel on 
which BLADF. RL.NN’ER was 
(rased. and we’d Ix- unable to use 
any stills from tlu* film. We 
lemaincd adamant, though, and 
stuc k toour guns.and thc-x eventu- 
alls caved in. In re-releasing the 
original novel I only made alxuit 
SI 2 . 500 . But I kept ms integiity. 
And my Ixxik.’ 

Flic* "feud" between Dick and 
the*BLADF RLNNFR |>ieduction 
was Iiii.iIIn settled shortly liefore 
Christmas of 1981 . At that time— 
nine h to the- author's surpiise— 
Sc oil ins 1 ted Die k tothestudiofo! a 
|x*isonal meeting, and a screening 
ol 20 minute's ol the* him “When I 
met Ridlex —Iiii.iIIn —I ke*j>l tIt 11 ik¬ 
ing ol how I had continuously 
siii|K*d at ALIEN. As he* lexrktd at 
me and I looked at him. I knew lie 
had to Ix- thinking alxuit this. I 
thought. It max well Ix-that Scott 
will |x>|) me one lot this right here'.’ 
But he was very cordial. Duiingihe 
screening. Se oit even sat Ixhuid me 
to explain the* continuity (9 each 
scc|ucnce lie tail on the* projec tor.'' 


Director Ridley Scott, a graduate of an English art school, influenced the look of 
the film with hundreds of tiny thumbnail sketches, as well as several larger line 
drawings (below). It’s no coincidence that Scott s style is somewhat reminiscent of 
Jean Moebius" Giraud—Scott is a big fan of the noted French fantasy illustrator. 



26 


































After the screening, Dick and 
Scott had their first fac e to fare dis¬ 
cussion. “It was very frank." Dick 
explained. “I expressed certain 
ideas ih.it I hojxxl would lx- in (hr 
film, and then he- said they would 
not lx- in the film. Yet he was very 
friendly, very honest, and very 
open in what he said. Even though 
we openly disagreed on .1 number 
of |x>ints. tin* ait of cordiality was 
always maintained.” 

According to Dick, the main 
source of contention was a basic 
difference in what the lxx>k and 
film were all about. “To me. the 
replicants ate- deplorable.” Dick 
said. “ They are cruel, cold, and 
heartless. They have noetnpathy — 
which is how the- Yoight-kampff 
test catches them—and don't care 
about what happens toother c na¬ 
ture’s. They arc essentially less than 
human. 

“Scott.on the other hand, said he 
regarded them as supermen who 


couldn't fly. 1 lesaid 
they were smarter, 
sire >nger and IukI fast¬ 
er reflexes than hu¬ 
mans. His attitude 
was quite a diver¬ 
gence from my orig¬ 
inal |x>int of view, 
since the* theme of 
my hook is that 
Deckatd is dehu- 
mani/rd through 
tracking clown the 
androids. When I 
told him this. Scott 
said that he con¬ 
sidered it an intel¬ 
lectual idea, and 
added that he was not interested 
in making an esoteric film. 

“But I think that Harrison Ford 
realized the ambiguities of Deck- 
aid's c hatac ter.” Dick added. ‘Tin 
sure Foul will show just how dis¬ 
tasteful his job is for him. I have 
faith in that.” 


THE NEW YORK STREET SET on the Warner Bros, back lot was transformed 
into the bustling metropolis oI Ridleyville over a three month period oI construction 
and set dressing. Large corrugated pipes, electrical conduits and other signs of 
'retrofitting" were attached to the brick and plaster facades (above, inset top). In 
addition, store displays were added which protruded over the concrete sidewalks. 
The set was built to feature different "neighborhoods." including the sordid 
nightclub district (center). The Japanese-style neon signs were built for the film by 
American Neon, based on designs by illustrator Tom Southwell (above left). 




27 






































DIRECTOR 


lidley Sc oil 
first saw the* 
screenplay fm 
BLADE RUN¬ 
NER while on 
ALIEN, lie had 
to pass on the 
script, hut heal- 
ways kepi it ill 
mind. A year 
and a half later, 
the script was still up lot grabs. 
Scott grabbed. 

“I accepted the tihn for two rea¬ 
sons.” Scott explained. "Firsl, I 
knew* Michael Deeley well, and 
knew 1 could work with him. 1 lie 
second reason was these reenplay — 
I hadn 't lx*en able to get it out of mv 
head since I first read it. even 
though Ed initially passed on the* 
idea. Re-reading it. I dec ided it was 
an extraordinary piece of w*ork. 
and it seemed to le nd itsell to some 
marvelous design |>ossibililies.” 

That Scott saw BLADE RUN¬ 
NER in let ms of its design is not 
surprising. As a young man (lie's 
now 15), lie attended England's 
Royal College ol Arts to study 
painting and drawing, inteiests 
which had followed him lioin 
childhood. Scott still draws, a tal¬ 
ent he feels is in\ aluable to the film- 
making process. "A sketch,” Scott 
said. ”is infinitely morcuscful than 


the* lx*st two-hour story conference.” 

While at Royal College, Scott 
found an old Ifiintu Bole s in a 
sc hool c upboard, and c inema soon 
supplanted painting as his pri- 
marv conecrn. Scott's first him was 
BOV ON A BICYCLE, a short 
xvliic h In* wrote, diiec ted and pho- 
tographed himself on a budget of 
£65 (about $125). After a screening 
at the Biitish Film I nst it me*, the* 
BEI w as impressed enough to give 
Scott another £250 to “refine” the 
projec t. Scott was on his way. 

A stint at the* BBC I followed, first 
as a designer, and then as a elites toi 
on sue h (xipulai English programs 
as /-CARS. Crossing over into 
advertising. Scott founded his own 
production company (an ongoing 
concern tcxlax), xvhere lie* fxison- 
aI lx su|x*rvised the direc tion ol 
mote than 2.000 coinmerc ials. 

THE DUELLISTS, released in 
1077. was Scott’s litst feature liliu. 
Scott so loaded the liliu with pic - 
toral effects that lie* immediately 
bet aine a “name" to rec kon with. 
(It itic s c ailed the film—the* story* of 
a long-running feud between two 
French officers during the Na|x>- 
leonic Wars—"masterful,” ”ae las¬ 
sie .” and "staggeringly beautiful.” 

Although I HE DUELLISTS 
went on to winaSpecial Jury Prize 
at the* Cannes Film Festival, it was 
(jootlx distributed in this country , 
an oversight which still pains 


Scott. “The film xvas misunder¬ 
stood.” Scott said. "Contiary to 
what many thought, and how* the* 
c i it ic s approac bed it, THE DU EL¬ 
LIS IS xvas not an att film. While I 
was shooting it. I thought ol it as a 
western. Yet it xvas hooked on (he¬ 
at t-house ciicuit anyway. Conse¬ 
quently. it never leac lied the* laige- 
scaleaudicnc e it was intended for.” 

Fhere were no doubts that 
Scott's next liliu reached its audi¬ 
ence. ALIEN was one of I979’s top- 
grossing films, a projec t xvliic h has 
sine c- hi ought in over $ MX) million 
in rentals. Despite the huge success 
of ALIEN. Scott was once again 
put out by the general c i it ic al reac - 
tioti to the* film. 

I wanted to hack oil tlu* hatd- 
eore blood and gore*, and I think we 
managed to do that,” Scott said, 'll 
I wanted to. I could proha hi x make 
a $500,000 honor film—I know 
exadlx what to do and how to 
manipulate*. And manipulation is 
a dangerous word, a x ic tons word. 
Which is xvliy I xvas so angry that 
someone wrote that ALIEN xvas a 
manipulative piece o! blood and 
gore moviemaking with no ic*- 
(ieeming featuies whatsoever. I was 
xc ix angry about that because I had 
deliberately set out not to do that. 

"Except lor the chest-burster 
sequence. ALIEN is almost totally 
devoid of blood and gote.” Scott 
addctl. "What these critics coni- 



THE VID-PHON is Rldleyville s 
updated version of the Picturephone. 
Featured prominently in the Him— 
Harrison Ford is seen here talking to 
Rachael (Sean Young)—the Vid-Phon 
evolved from a Syd Mead illustration, 
and included “retrofitted" details from 
Japanese model kits for extra texture. 
Unlike the Spinner's display screens, 
whose graphics were added in 
postproduction, the VidPhon's video 
image was prerecorded and piped onto 
the small screen during principal 
photography. The VidPhon's graphics 
were the work of Tom Southwell, who 
also designed Deckard's VidPhon 
credit card, shown actual size below. 


pletely missed xvas the* total envi¬ 
ronment of the* film, how aitists 
like* H R (tigei and RotiLohhhad 
conn ibuted to an environment 
which had been very carefully 
designed and thought out. I'o a 
large extent, that environment was 
a statement, and. I think, a great 
pic-c e ol ai I wot k.” 

I hough Scott insists ALIEN 
was not manipulative, he admits 
his background in directing com- 
mere ials taught him how to hook 
an audience. "Lommetc ial adver¬ 
tising teac hex you all soi tsol things 
that you don't really leant about 
when you're in school.” Scott 
explained. “Film schools tend to 
deal onlx with very esoteiic sul>- 
jec Is. People* seem to lot get that the 
end lesull has got tosomehowc om- 
niunicale with the audience.” 

With his hac kgioundasanailist, 
Scott IxTieves that a film’s design 
can lx* just as iui|x»rtant—and in 
some cases, |x*i haps moreso—than 
the* actual narrative. As such, lie 
tends to c losely control as mails of 
the* visual elements as |x>ssihlc. 
pi ef cuing not to simply turn a film 
ovei to a picxluction designer and 
effec ts diiec lot. 

"I think there’s a great tendency 
lot a diiec toi to walk in and never 
lx* involved with Ins ait depart¬ 
ment or his camera ciexv,” Scott 
said. "I le's only involved with the* 
ac toi and the sc ript, hut that'sonly 
half the job. Aftet I'd finished with 
ALIEN. I had a fairly thorough 
grounding in certain effects areas, 
and a naivete* about others. Work¬ 
ing xvitli Douglas Trumbull's EEC* 
crew has licl|x*c! me to shade* in 
some of those* previously blank 
areas. Thisxvasanabsolutely neces¬ 
sary education lot me: the* film 
diiec toi of the 80s and the* '*M)s will 
have to lx* able* to do nrry thing, 
and s|x*c ial effects and computers 
ait* going to become as muc h of a 
icxil as the* Mite hell camera.” 

For Scott, control over the film¬ 
making process includes such 
seemingly mundane tasks as ac tu- 
a11x o|x*tating his camera, which 
he has done foi his thousands ol 
commercials, as xvell as his pie- 
vious features. But BLADE. RUN¬ 
NER was shot in llollywcxxl. and 
the* Icxal cameraman’s union dcx*s 
not lcxik kindly to directors getting 
ic x > involved with the camera c rew. 

"This is the* fiist film I've shot in 
the United States, and overall I 
enjoy Los Angeles very much,” 
Scott said. "But I must say that I 
encountered a certain amount of 
frustration in dealing with certain 
I lolly wood union regulations. 
One of the rules here in America— 
xvliic h has no equivalent in Biitain 
—is that an American direc tor 
cannot o|x*rate his own camera. 
Even more than being a diiec tot. I 
am .i camera o|x*rator. That's how 
I've always xvoiked. Having my 
camera taken away from me is 
illogical, like* taking Arnold Pal¬ 
mer’s golf clubs away fioin him. 
It's also ineff ic ient.” 










DESIGN 


hen* are c er¬ 
tain moments 
in movies where 
the ba< k ground 
cun Ik* as im- 
portant as the 
actor,’* said di¬ 
rector Ridley 
Scott. "The de¬ 
sign of a film is 
the script." 

For Scott—first and always an 
artist and graphic designet—de¬ 
termining the look of BLADE 
Rl ’NNER was the most important 
task he had to face. Pei haps no 
other dim tor is as concerned with 
the background of a scene than 
Scott, who builds a dense*, kaleido¬ 
scopic acc ret ion of detailing within 
every set in a proc ess hec alls "layer¬ 
ing." Just as top record producer 
Phil Spector created his famous 
"Wall of Sound" by overdubbing 
countless singers and instruments, 
Scott takes a set and crams it with 
information, adding and adding 
props and details until the audi¬ 
ence is overwhelmed by the sum of 
the parts. 

"To me." Scott said, "a him is 
like a 700-layer cake." 

(In ALIEN. Scott’s passion for 
detailing extended tostenc ilingthe 
words "Weylan Vuiani" on the 
Sigourney Weaver’s underwear. 
The name is also seen on a beer c an 
in the ship's mess hall. The words 
were die name o! the corporation 
foi whic h the crew of lUvNastrorno 
worked). 

Early in preproduction, Scott 
went over the script with piodiu- 
tion designer Inwrence Pauli line 
by line, letting the words and 
action suggest \isual |x>ssi hi lilies, 
and letting pio|M>sed \ isuals shajx* 
the screenplay in turn. "Most films 
depic t the futureas pristine,austere 
and colorless," Scott said. "We 


because it’s much easier to create 
the environment for a space film 
than a film that details lifeon Eaith 
in the future. In outer space, every¬ 
thing just has to look technical. 
And onc e you get above a certain 
level, that becomes relatively easy. 

"I insisted that BLADE RLN- 
NER’s final look lx* authentic, not 
just speculative." Scott continued. 
"Takec lollies and cars, for instance. 
II you could take someone from 10 
years ago and whisk him to Times 
Square today, he wouldn’t have 
that many shocks in store for him. 
especially as far as clothing is con¬ 
cerned. since we’re seeing some¬ 
thing of a resurgence in ’ 10s 


fashions right now. The only 
shexk they’re going to have will 
concern the sleekness of our 
automobiles." 

Scott continually walked the 
tightrope between elements that 
were too futuristic and those that 
were icx> reminiscent of current 
urban environments. "You go 
through rather frighteningprocess 
every time you made a design deci¬ 
sion," Scott said. "Whether it’s a 
telephone, a bar,orihesh<x*sac har- 
acter will wear, once it’s been 
designed it must lx* hun|M*d in with 
everything else in the film, for bet¬ 
ter or worse." 

Scott’s extremely complex stylis- 


THE BLIMP that floats ovar the city 
(above)—bombarding residents with 
commercial messages—was one of the 
more unusual features of Ridleyville, 
and one of the most difficult to concep¬ 
tualize. At least three variations of the 
Blimp were scrapped (including 
the beige version with a cat- 
walk. shown top right), until 
modelmaker Bill George 
(inset, holding the final, 
four-foot model) came up with 
the plumpy look that Scott 
wanted. George worked with 
modelers Mike McMillian and 
Rick Guttierrez to create a 
web of antennas, tiny bill¬ 
boards and assorted pro¬ 
trusions to give the Blimp its 
proper scale. Bottom Right: 

Mike McMillian wires up the 
Blimp s lighting fixtures, which included 
several small “billboards" backlit with 
tiny florescent tubes, twinkling fiber 
optics, and tiny bulbs the size of a 
pinhead (normally used inside wrist- 
watches) at the end of each antenna. 
The commercials that play on the two 
large screens were projected in 35mm 
during a second in-camera pass onto 
squares of silk placed over the Blimp's 
semi-transparent screens. The result¬ 
ing double exposure makes the image 
appear almost holographic. The bars of 
light which pulse around the screens 
were bundled strands of fiber-optics, 
lit through a color wheel and shot 
during a separate motion-control pass. 


were determined to avoid shiny 
buildings. undcr|x>pulated streets 
and silver suits with diagonal 
zip|x*rs. This is a tangible future 
not too exotic to be believed." 

The emphasis on design is more 
than merely decorative—Scott felt 
it was essential to the film, and he 
demanded logical answers to the 
problems of utban design circa 
201?). "The nightmare in my mind 
was that this l<M>k would merely 
Ixxomc an intelligent speculation 
concerning a c ity 10 years in the 
future, and nothing more," Scott 
said. “Believe me. designing 
BLADE RENNER was more of a 
challenge than ALIEN, simply 


29 






















'O'the Flying 


Spinner. 


^^ iS£r>f 




A (Flying) Ca r Is B orn 

/4w/o customizer Gene Winfield builds the first 
two dozen vehicles of the 2019 model year. 


To build the futuristic autos of 
Ridleyville. Ridley Scott turned to car 
customizer Gene Winfield, perhaps 
best known for building the full-size 
Galileo shuttlecraft for the STAR 
TREK television series 
With a crew of 35. Winfield created 
more than two dozen full-size 
vehicles. The cars featured fiberglass 
bodies and a VW chassis, except for 
the larger vehicles, which were built 
on the frame of Dodge vans 
“Originally they suggested that I 
use the engine and frame of a 
Camaro. said Winfield. “But I 
recommended Volkswagons be¬ 
cause they're air cooled—you don't 
have to worry about a radiator—and 
because they're rear-engine. It would 
be a tremendous problem getting the 
Camaro's large engine within the 
needed body shapes." 

Winfield s greatest challenge 
involved the building of four full- 
scale Spinners, including two that 


could be driven like regular cars, and 
one that could to appear to take 
off. Although Winfield's Spinners 
didn't really have to fly. their odd 
shape and mechanical require¬ 
ments—including hydraulically- 
operated doors that lifted up and 
away—required a sizeable portion 
of his $800,000 budget 
Construction began with 
blueprints (top), which had 
been prepared for the miniature 
makers. From the plans, a full-scale 
wooden mock-up was assembled, 
from which molds were taken to 
create the fiberglass body pieces 
It took about four weeks to 
completely assemble each car. 
including the installation of the 
necessary hydraulics. The "street" 
Spinners used a standard VW engine 
and rear suspension, with a custom 
tubular steel chassis up front. 

The "flying" Spinner was built from 
scratch over an all-aluminum frame 

Right: Len Hokel finishes up 
the detailing in the cockpit of a 
Police Spinner. Two wooden 
boards prop open the 
hydraulic doors. Below: The 
completed Spinner as it looked 
when it left Gene Winfield s 
workshop. Art department 
crews later covered the vehicle 
with decals, extra hardware 
and dirt (see photo, page 35). 


S 


s Vd Meads ori gina , 


concept illuslralii 

to save weight. Designed to be 
picked up by a crane to simulate 
flight, extra hydraulics were installed 
to match the capabilities of the 
miniatures: the front wheels folded 
into the car, flaps dropped into place 
and moveable body sections 
channeled out jets of steam and 
carbon-dioxide 
"We also heavily detailed the 
bottom with tubes, lines and other 
paraphernalia so it would be interest¬ 
ing to look at." Winfield said 
* All of Winfield's cars were freshly 
painted and (except for the flying 
Spinner) ready to drive when they 
left his Canoga Park workshop They 
looked so good, in fact, that the art 
department often had to "dirty down" 
the cars, adding dents, grime and 
rust to make them appear older 
"You hate to see that sort of thing 
happen." Winfield said, "but I under¬ 
stood They just wanted them to look 
as realistic as possible." 

The Flying Spinner featured a custom- 
made aluminum frame (top right) and 
sophisticated hydraulic controls. Based 
on blueprints originally prepared for 
the miniature crew, a full-size wooden 
mock-up was built (center right), from 
which the finished fiberglass pieces 
were molded. Body panels were 
then individually bolted onto the 
chassis (bottom right). 




p 


30 




















































































lie sense was influenced In a 
inimhei of sources, including 
Edward I fop|xTs haunting paint¬ 
ing Xighthawks, which depicts a 
group of urban survivors frozen in 
si lent meditation in the stark light 
ol an all-night diner. ‘I was con¬ 
stantly waving a reproduction oi 
this painting under the noses of the* 
production team to illustrate the* 
look and mood I was after.** Scott 
said. 

Further “atmosphere” littered 
through Scott in the form of \SOs 
photographs. liogaith engtav- 
mgs. and. most iui|x>rtantly. the* 
hallucinatory, skewed look ol 
Heaiy Metal. "Eve* always been a 
Ian of th.it maga/ine, whic h I think 
deals with what I term ’half-fan¬ 
tasy.'” Scott said. “I panicularly 
etijox the work ol Moehius [Jean 
Girard). You can certainly see a 
Hcaiy Metal influence tluoughout 
BLADE RUNNER; Chew’s cos¬ 
tume. lot instance. ispurcMcx'hius. 
And we originally had a segme nt, 
subsequently cut. when Dcckard 
visits a replicant's hotel, which is 
run by anoldman withthisinc redi- 
hle series of pi|x*s running from his 
lungs into his mouth. I his was 
sup|H>sed to lx* out version ol a man 
with heavy-duty emphysema—a 
nicelv surrealistic Heavy Metal 
tout h." A similarly-bizarreimage— 
a gorilla m a business suit usedasa 
bouncer ilia sec*dv hotel—was also 
story lxlarded, hut never filmed. 

While designing his I i I ms. Scott 
often relies on a ptexess lie* duhs 
“pictorial reference,“ involving 
theassc‘inhling of large numbers of 
pic lutes, comic sand art lxx>ks. and 
|>oiing through them m a search 
lor interesting artists and imagery . 
While engaged in such a reference 
hinge. Scott stumbled ac toss Sen¬ 
tinel, a 1979art collection by indus¬ 
trial designer Syd Mead. I In duce - 
tor was captivated. “A lot of the art 
in Sentinel was a hit tcx> futuristic 
for what I had in mindful BLADE 
RUNNER,** Scott said, “but I had 
the feeling Syd would lx* able to 
place lus visions within our film’s 
time period. I was s|x*c ifically 
impressed with his automotive 
designs, and since Fane bet’s script 
placed emphasis on certain futuris¬ 
tic vehicles, I felt I might lx* on to 
something.** 

Mead was called in April 1980 by 
the* film’s production manager. 
John Rogers, and asked to inert 
with Scott. Flic* -19-year-old art¬ 
ist brought with him a set of im¬ 
pressive c redcntials. 

Mead lxgan his career at Ford 
Motor C jompany s Ad vane eel Velii- 
c le Studio in Dearborn, Mu liigan. 
Two years later. Mead was hired hv 
the (III it ago-based Hansen Com¬ 
pany. designing promotional 
IxMiklcts for such c Iic*nts as I’.S. 
Steel and Sonv. In 1970. lie* formed 
his own design company, provid¬ 
ing the* concept for a (iarribcan 
Cruiseliner. working on mass tran¬ 
sit projects, designing jumbo jet 
interiors and he lping to build the 


w 1 invented a social theory for each car — 
why it looked and acted the way it did. The 
theory rested on the projection that the city 
was in bad shape—that the consumer / 
exchange system had broken down. ■■ 

VISUAL CONSULTANT SYD MEAD 



su|x*rsonic (Concorde airliner. 

Although his clients were all 
liascd in the present. Mead’s pri- 
rnary concerns lav inhume studies. 
“My futuristic interests were ac tu- 
allv why Ford hired me iu the first 
place," Mead explained. “Not only 
could I come up with advanced 
designs that weren’t im|xrssible. 
hut I could also projet t them intoa 
complete imaginary scenario, as 
op|x>scd loan isolated tende r ingof 
a single car on a white board.” 

BLADE RUNNER was not 
Mead’s first brush with llollv- 
wcxxl. In 1979. lie had Ixen hired to 
conceptuali/c the* mammoth alien. 
VGei for M AR rREK—THE 
MOTION PICTURE, working 
with John Dv kstra’s A|x>gee group 
on the exteriors, and with Douglas 
Trumbull's effects team on the* 
\ Gei interior. In addition. Mead 
contributed designs to Disney's 
new sc u ric e tic lion film. I R( )N. 

Another Mead design—allx it 
unc redited—found its wav into 
I MF EMPIRE STRIKES BACK. 
Flic* armored Snow Walker, cred¬ 
ited to Jcx* Johnston of ILM. was 
based in |>art. on a 19h7 illustra¬ 
tion Mead prepared for U. S. Steel 
and reprinted m Sentinel. “I came 
up with what I thought would have 
made an excellent multi-terrain 
vehicle* lor the* Army.” Mead said. 
‘Lucasfilm later admitted that the 
feet of the* Snow Walkers were 
based on rnv designs." 

As for BI \DE RUNNER. Mead s 
Inst assignment was designing the* 
futuristic, hut recognizable, auto¬ 
mobile's. “I first invented a social 
theory for each car I designed— 
why eac h auto lcx>kc*d and ac ted as 
it did." Mead said. ’’Basically, that 
theory tested on the projec non that 


thee nv thesec at s moved about in— 
and hv inference, the city’s soc iety 
as well—was in had slui|x*. 

“ Flic* c harac ter of the c ity in the 
film came about, in my opinion, 
because the consumer exchange 
system had broken down," Mead 
continued. “You wouldn’t buy a 
new car. you’d chop holes in the 
dash, add nc*v\ anti-pollution 
device’s or install high-s|x*ed ail 
conditioning hv mcxlifying or 
replacing the* existing units. Ibis 
illustrates Ridley s ideasol retrofit¬ 
ting. a concept that |X‘imeates tlu* 
film. I her clot e. most ol the film’s 
cars have an accmutilated, lutnpv. 
added-on lcx»k." 

Mead’s iolc* cpiic klv exparidc*cl to 
me hide illustrations of streets, 
siorelionts and props. "I pic ked up 
a general feeling of how they were 
going to slant the film in terms of 
scc’iieiv. lighting and so forth," 
Mead explained. I incor|x>ratcd 
these feelings to enciicle the velii- 
c Us. whic h Ridley liked very muc h. 
Being able to help design the se ts 
insured that my cars would seen in 
appropriate surroundings." 

Although Mead’s drawings have 
been reprinted extensively, the 
final word on the film’s design was 
still that of Scott and prcxhiction 
designer Iwrence Pauli. "I was 
involved with the* direc tor on every 
as|x*c t of the* project that involved 
the look of the* film.” explained 
Pauli, whose features credits 
include BLUE COLLAR. THE 
HIRED HAND, and LITTLE 
EAUSS AND BIG HALSEY. 
“ I liat's what a prcxluc tion designer 
dcx*s: ccxrrdinate. approve and con¬ 
tribute to every set. prop, costume 
and color on the film. A lot of |xi>- 
ple were resfxmsible for the* final 


Ux>k ol BLADE RUNNER, and 
there was a lot of creative input 
from all of them. On a show of this 
scale* and sco|x*. no one person 
could have possibly done it all. 

“For example, my assistant art 
director. Stephan Dane, not only 
designed three large trucks and a 
bus. hut also physically pic ked out 
a lot of out retrofit material, which 
consisted ol cast-off mechanical 
parts, trash, foam, and soon. I sent 
Dane to the .Monthan Air Force 
Base in Fuse on. Arizona and he 
rummaged around the salvage 
yards there, coming hack with 
truc kloads of the stuff." 

Other key members of Pauli's 
staff included art director David 
Snyder and set dresser Linda De- 
Sc enna. Five set designers were also 
hired. In addition, Sherman Libby 
and Mentor Huebner were brought 
on as prcxluc tion illustrators, serv¬ 
ing up storyboards and concept 
sketches. “Labby worked very 
tightlv with Sc ott on thecontinuity 
drawings,” Pauli recalled. “But it 
was somewhat frustrating. Scott is 
sue h a gcxxf artist—with a beauti¬ 
ful continuous-line style—that 
he’s as gcxxl at story boards as Sher¬ 
man is. In fact. Ridley was respon¬ 
sible for hundreds of drawings 
throughout the film. We ended up 
calling these little IS"x3"sketches, 
Ridleygrams.* They were visual 
telegrams indicating his ideas and 
showing us what lie* wanted. By the 
end of the show we had a bulging 
pac kage full of them.” 

Pauli frequently mentions the 
"team” approach to production 
design employed on BI ADF RUN¬ 
NER. When asked if these com¬ 
ments were a veiled reaction to the 
media s{x>tlight focused on Mead 



Right: Chew (James Hong) 
works in his icy genetic 
design lab. growing eyes for 
replicants. The set was built in 
a huge meat locker, where 
temperatures were kept below 
zero. Below: Ridley Scott (I) 
and producer Michael Deeley 
try to keep warm on the set. 
















Left: The Pyramid during assembly in an EEG smoke room. Paul Curley reaches over to position one of the towers as Mike 
McMillian (rear) and Mark Steton (right) size up the model. Right: The fully-assembled Pyramid is inspected by (l-r) 
modelmakers Mike McMillian. Tom Field. Kris Gregg. Chris Ross. Bill George and Mark Stetson, and etlects supervisors Doug 
Trumbull and Richard Yuricich. The model was only enclosed on three sides: note exposed edges in lower left comer. Inset: 
The tiny window lights were the work of Trumbull’s son. John Vidor, who spent days scraping paint off the acrylic wall panels. 


—who. after all. was hired as a con¬ 
sultant and not a production de¬ 
signer—Pauli paused for a moment. 
"Frankly, yes." he answered. "Syd 
was initially brought in to design 
cars and hardware, and he did a 
good job. But those tars didn’t 
magic ally bloom overnight. It took 
more than three months to evolve 
those designs before Ridley and I 
were satisfied with them. 

"I'm not trying to be snide about 
Syd here." Pauli continued. "My 
|x>int is that I used the futurist in 
Me ad the* same way I used Moebius* 
Hr airy Metal work or Frank I.loyd 
Wright’s architecture—as the best 
source of research in the world. I 
used all of the textural elements of 
this input as an approach to 
BLADE RUNNER’s final design." 

Pressed further on his feelings 
toward the Mead media blit/—in¬ 
cluding articles in Otnni and sev¬ 
eral mass market film magazines— 
Pauli admitted that he feels he and 
his crew have been overlooked in 
favor of Mead, who received his 


usual fee of $ 1.500 day—somewhat 
higher than union scale for set 
designers. 

"It made me mad that articles 
were written about Mead indicat¬ 
ing that, besides the cars and hard¬ 
ware. he had also designed all (he 
sets and street scenes," Pauli said. 
"He made considerable contribu¬ 
tions in that area, as did I. but this 
was a group effort. You can see that 
In merely comparing the final look 
of the streets to Syd’s preproduc ¬ 
tion paintings of them. 

"Besides, the whole look of the* 
film is ultimately Scott's." Pauli 
added. "His is the unifying eye 
behind this projec t." 

Scott wanted a look that was 
dark, crowded and foreboding; 
futuristic, yet at the same time 
somewhat nostalgic for the* seedy 
urban centers of 10 years ago. "The 
feel of BI.ADE RUNNER is one of 
vast spaces that, paradoxically, are 
also claustrophobic and very 
heavy," Pauli explained. "The 
look of the film is complex, yet at 


the same time it's Ixtsically an 
example of old architectural 
stvies co-existing with the new 
ones. BLADE RUNNER is film 
noir, it all takes place at night. So I 
started to think of those late 10s. 
early ’50s films which always 
starred a daik. blooding city, and 
then extended that look 10 years 
past out time. 

"Another concept was that a lot 
ol the environmental necessities of 
this city—plumbing, ait condi¬ 
tioning and so one—are starting to 
malfunction. So how are these 
breakdowns handled? By retrofit¬ 
ting.' putting huge conduits and 
piping on the sides of buildings 
and sidewalks to provide the neces¬ 
sary' services. Since the* inner sys¬ 
tems weren’t functioning and the 
time and money weren't available 
to tip them out of the walls, it 
would lx* easier to merely service 
them from the outside of the 
buildings. 

" Hie term retrofitting got a little 
out of hand, really," Pauli admit¬ 


ted. "I’ve since hern questioned 
about retro-deco, retro-trash and 
retro-chic. Although most of these 
terms welt* used on-set, they’re just 
not that important. They were 
jokes, really, an additivelayertothe 
overall architectureof the film." 

"The theory' behind retrofitting 
was basically ‘organized clutter.”’ 
Mead noted. "Another offshoot of 
this was something we humor¬ 
ously c ailed ‘trash-c hie.’ Dec kard’s 
apartment reflects this, because 
many of the* furnishings, although 
obviously fairly new. have a 
strange*, recycled quality to them. 
But I think retrofitting' hel|x*d to 
give the entire film a cohesive 
atmosphere and style, a direction 
that could lx* used to help the other 



THE TYRELL PYRAMID was one of the most elaborate miniatures In the film. Standing 2'h feet tall on a nine-foot 
base, the model was built on a guesstimated scale of 1:1000. and was meant to represent a building nearly half a 
mile tall. Although there are two Pyramids in the film, only one model was built—optical sleight-of-hand was 
used to suggest the second tower. The Pyramid was designed by Tom Cranham. who also helped storyboard 
the elaborate fly-by that opens the film. Much of the Pyramid’s intricate detail was fashioned 
from acid-etched brass plates, which were layered 
in extensively, particularly on the flying buttresses 
that rise up on each side of the tower. The core 
of the Pyramid was composed of styrene and 
plastic patterns cast in clear polyester, backed 
with acrylic sheets cut to size to minimize 
shrinkage. Internal lighting came from 
florescent tubes built into the 
model, shining through thousands 
of holes scraped at random 
in the painted plastic panels. 

Additional lighting on 
the towers atop the 
structure were 
axialites. tiny 
bulbs used in 
the dials of 
watches. 


















w Syd Mead was brought in to design the 
cars, and he did a good job. But those cars 
didn’t magically bloom overnight. It took 
more than three months to evolve the designs 
before Ridley Scott and / were satisfied. ■■ 

PROD. DESIGNER LAWRENCE PAULL * ' 


designers pattern their woik after." 

Ilie design Ini the futureniftrn|>- 
olis woikd out In Mead, Pauli 
andScott featuieshugcskyscrapeis 
(up In 7(H I slot ics l.ill) sup|xn led nil 
maiiimnih j>\ Intis h.ill .1 hint k long 
and (>0 sini ics tall. Cumin build¬ 
ings would exist, in a tin k1 1 1ittl 
form, convened into plumbing 
and delivery dut is. air-condition* 
ing plants. storage areas, and sei- 
vice accesses to tile mega-sir nc - 
lutes. ()nl\ (he pi i\lifted t lasses 
would live* alxne these noth 11 <m >1 
demarcation |M>ints. F 01 those 
below. Hi AM. Rl'N'MR's city 
gives a literal twist to the idea til 
“low-liles.” 

Nowhere was Scott's last illation 
with ‘‘layering*’ more tangibly evi¬ 
dent than on tin set nl this Inline 
megalo|x>lis, huili on the lamous 
New Y 01 k Street set on the Warner’s 
hatklnt. lexlure was everywhere; 
llu* st 1 eel even smelled like a slea/v 
metrn|x>lis. with tlu* nci present 
aroma nl Inn 111 cofftx*. wet Hash 
and Ixiiling noodles. Although the 
look is somewhat retninescent nl 
I long Kong. New Noik. Pn.idillx 
Circus and Fokyo’s (.m/a Snip, 
the Cits is death the original 
design nl Mead. Pauli and St mi. 
laithiullx tieaied in tluee dimen¬ 
sions. For lac k nl a Ixiter name, the 
crew duhlxd il “Kidlew ille." 

(.real wet < lumps nl jm|k*i (retro- 
trash) lay everywhere: ihitk corru¬ 
gated pi|M*s studied up from the* 
sidewalks and wi it heel across and 
thinugh (he* facades nl the* build¬ 
ings. Ovei the babble of shouted 
instruc lions Imm elee trie ians and 
glips. Se nil's new wave punk 
extras (some ot them carrying 
umbrellas with lighted handles, 
yet another odd visual tout In were 
nearly engulfed by the larger c rowd 
nl Oriental stand-ins wealing old. 
threatlliare. epnlied pajama suits— 
ail indication ol theii lowly status. 
All m all. a seech. striking nnleu. 


()neof the lilm sdesignelements 
reflec led thec'Xtrnneoverc rowding 
piedie (e el Ini the giant. Asian-tlom- 
inated metin|x)lis. conceived in In- 
two huge cities which had grown 
together. (Mead had the New Ynik 
skyline in mind when designing 
the* <itysca|K*s. although the* final 
I >1 im identifies the c ii\ as I.os 
Angeles.) With a shot I age nl spac e, 
many nl (he* arcades and shops in 
Kidleyville extend out into the 
sticrt. Cylindrical hubbies on the* 
second Horn nl a club called The 
Snake l*it extrude lout feel nut in 
the ait: the bubbles hold mannik¬ 
ins weal mg kmk\ SlfcM leathe 1 out¬ 
fits, and oversized smiled j>\ thons. 

KkI lex \ ille wasalsne one eived In 
In* one giant advertisement, with 
huge* commercial seit*e‘iis on the 
side s of buildings, a s 111 leal hlun|) 
floating overhead with numerous 
hi 11 Ik >ai els and two huge* sc Ten is 
Hashing commercials, and garish 
neon signs crowding the* street 
le*\e*l. Some signs advertised famil¬ 
ial piiNlue ts: Atari. Jim Beam. I n¬ 
dent. Mie hclnh and Shakes s; nth- 
eis were Ini products as yet 
uudieamt nl; still others were elab¬ 
orately lettered in Japanese*. I lie 
largest iie*nn hi 11 Im kii el featured the* 
garish image of a gill wearing .1 
cowboy hat, whose* lc*!t leg cotit inu- 
ously moved in wanton invitation. 

“We promoted neat lx . r >0 hits of 
neon Imm various companies lot 
the film,” said Pauli. **'I 'hesecom¬ 
panies didn't actually donate 


siieris. BLADI RINNFK utilized 
at least seven 1 ajiidly-spinning 
sj)imklers to simulate .1 heavy 
dowii|rout. necessitating length) 
se*t-u))s while the rain effects were 
sync hroni/ed. I he constant start¬ 
ing and stopping nl this rain sys- 
it*i 11 tesulted in a clamp. |>crpciual 
e lull nil the set. 

Combined with the* shadows of 
the* night, the tumbling sounds ol 
the Iti11 -si/e*el vehicles hissing 
clown the rain-slic keel streets, and 
the vaporsr ising from thence asinn- 
al. discreetly camouflaged smoke 
|nm. Riellcyville had been effec- 
1 »xt lx iiansfurmcxl into the* ulti¬ 
mate* non nightmare. One* final 
touch: (lining many nl the* rain 
scene's. Scott had slow eerie music 
!c*d ilunugh overhead lotidsjMak- 
eis to help involve hisc ast andc rew 
w it h the mooch atmos|)here he had 
so painstakingly construe ted. and 
so htcathtakingly ac hieved. 


them, hut were kind e nough (ogive 
us the inoncx to make them. All nl 
the signs wide h we had s|>c*c ilic ally 
construe ted Ini BI.AIH Rl’NNFR 
were* made In American Neon in 
Bui hank, which spent nearly six 
months building them. Actually. 
Ameiieaii Neon nnl\ contributed 
two-thirds nl the things you sex* in 
the moxie. We iuhciiteel the* test nl 
out neon from ONE FROM 111K 
IIFAR1 altei they were finished 
with theii Vegas sets. 1 hat kicking 
cowgiil; she came directly to us 
Imm ONI FROM I HE HEAR I 
S< nil's vision nl the future also 
iuc lueleel a neai-jxTpetual ac idraiu 
eauscxl h\ the out-of-control indus- 
triali/atiou. I'ocomiucingly sim¬ 
ulate* those* torrential downpours, 
an elaborate sprinkler system was 
elec led a In uit lit) ieet above the nut- 
dnni set. Whereas must produc¬ 
tions ate content to use* a single 
spiinklei he ad indmj> lain on the ii 


Chris Ross details the 
root of the oversized 
Pyramid model. The 
miniature included a 
highly-detailed 
landing bay (shown 
below, while under 
construction) for 
which a 1 Spinner 
model was needed. 




AN OVERSIZED SECTION of the Tyrell Pyramid, shown at right during 
photography in an EEG smoke room, was built for the close-ups needed for the 
film’s opening fly-by. The photograph was double exposed to show the com¬ 
puter-controlled camera movement, in this case, an upward tilt. The model 
was 4 feet high. 5 feet wide, and included several working elevators, with 
.— -- 3-inch-tall cars. Since the fly-bys re- 

quired the camera to “see" into 
specific offices, two tiny rooms 
r j. .• rS" ^SH^^^^^^were built, matched to the full- 

scale sets. The miniature 

i 


rooms included v 4 "-tall 
^ human figures, and 
tt, tiny ceiling fans. 


1 I 






























DECKARD’S CAR (left) was designed to resemble a decommissioned Spinner, capable of street travel only. Visual 
consultant Syd Mead reasoned that the Spinner s air flaps and air-directional panels would be removed, but other original 
features—such as the heavy-duty windshield wipers and oversized bumpers—would remain. The car. like everything else in the 
city, has been retrofitted, with new electronics and air conditioning equipment left on the outside for easier servicing (left) 
The car is shown here prior to final detailing—graphics, grime and a 2019 license plate were added later by the art department. 


O • of the 
most important 
design concepts 
Ridley Scott had 
to face were 
BLADE RLN- 
NKRs vehicles. 
Unlike fashions 
or architecture, 
VEHICLES the look of Rid¬ 
ley vilie’s cars 
is sure tochange lOyearsfrom now. 

Creating the necessary cars, 
trucks and taxis—and making 
them believable—was Syd Mead's 
primary function. Mead designed 
five basic vehicles, including an 
armored taxi; the People’s Vehicle, 
a small, government owned trans¬ 
port; Deckard’s private car; and. 
most prominently, the Spinner, a 
police vehicle capable of flight. 

The vehicles had a thoroughly 
worked out history and function. 
"Ridley had his own particular 
vision for the cars," Mead said. “He 
wanted believable mechanical 
objec ts. hut at no time did he want 
these vehic les—or any piece of 
mac hinery in the film, for that mat¬ 
ter—to dominate the proceedings. 
1 le d always say we weren ’t making 
a "hardware” movie like 2001. 
What he wanted were backgrounds 
that reflected an everyday, worka¬ 
day level of technology, yet back¬ 
grounds that would still lx* suffi¬ 
ciently impressive to interest an 
audience." 

Mead’s designs were attrac tive, 
but they were also based on sound 
mechanical and practical con¬ 
cepts. For instance, the taxis were 
designed low to the ground to 
emphasize their load-carrying abil¬ 
ities. And Mead developed the Peo¬ 
ple’s Vehicle as a possible solution 
to the mass transit problem. "It's a 
little cart-like thing anyone can 
rent or least*, but not own," Mead 
explained. "You climb in. insert a 
card and pay for the time you actu¬ 
ally use it. Then you simply leave it 
parked on the street when you’re 
through, and it sits patiently wait¬ 


ing for the next customer.” 

BLADE RUNNF.R s ’star car" 
is undoubtedly the Spinner, the 
fitst design concept discussed at 
Mead’s meetings with Scott. The 
starting-off principle for my work 
in the film was that this futuristic 
society could produce a car that 
could fly,” Mead explained. 

Sc ott had originally cone eivedof 
the Spinner as a fairly compact 
coupe. Instead. Mead designed a 
larger. "Chevrolet scale" model 
whic h would lend itself to visually 
impressive, full-scale takeoffs. The 
artist also dec ided against the heli¬ 
copter-blades and folding wings 
that had become a cliche. “Instead 
of unwieldy folding propellers or 
H.G. Wells-like appendages," 
Mead said. “I suggested designing 
the Spinner as an aerodyne, whic h 
is a heavier than air craft with an 
internal, enclosed lifting system 
built into it—something like the 
hovering Harrier planes the Biit- 
ish have been using during the 
Falkland Island c risis. I insisted on 
an ‘enclosed lift system* because the 
Spinner had to lx* believable. Fold¬ 
ing propellers and wings wouldn’t 
work in a congested urban traffic 
situation. 

“The floor boards were built out 


of clear plexiglass," Mead added, 
“so that anyone in the passenger 
compaitment could look clown at 
their feet and see the city flying 
away beneath them. I thought this 
was a nice, simple, and practical 
navigational aid. II (he instru¬ 
ments conked out you could always 
fly by the soles of your feet, so to 
s|x*ak. I’m not sure they used that 
little detail during shooting, 
though." Other design touches 
included heavy-duty windshield 
wipers and glass cleaning systems 
todeal with the highly-pollutedair 
of 2019. 

In addition to incorporating 
hydraulic sections which fold the 
the front wheels up inside the craft 
for its conversion to flight, and col¬ 
lapsible headrests built with self- 
contained speaker systems, per¬ 
haps Mead’s most unusual Spinner 
detail was a hydraulic "twist- 
wrist” steering device. The tradi¬ 
tional steering wheel was replaced 
with two in-dash holes into whic h 
operators placed each hand, grabbed 
a handle set within the hole. and. 
by turning their wrists, effectively 
guided the vehicle. 

Mead’s designs were turned over 
to draftsmen, who prepared detailed 
blueprints, from which both mini¬ 
ature and full-sized vehicles were 
built. Along the way, many refine¬ 
ments were made—some for practi¬ 
cal and structural reasons, some 
ordered by Ridley Scott, who felt 
Mead's designs tended to lx* too 
futuristic. 

"I set up the design format for 
each vehicle type and then let the 
draftsman and builders make 
necessary changes as they went 
along." Mead said. “What we 
ended up with was a curious 
accumulation of detail, a heuristic 
growth of txlds and ends that the 
original concepts didn’t include. I 
think the cars really do look believ¬ 
able because of this." 

Although nearly all of Mead's 
designs were constructed full size, 
miniature's were needed to make 
the Spinner “fly." Mark Stetson, 
who supervised the film’s minia¬ 
ture work, began by constructing a 


six-foot-long mexk-up in his gar¬ 
age to work out. in three dimen¬ 
sions. some o! tlu* design dilfic id- 
ties. Stetson made a number of 
change's to suit Scott, including 
altering the- Spinner's tool from a 
lase*r gun to a more-conventional 
siie-n and Hashing lights. 

Stetson’s crew built detailed 
Spinners in varying size's, horn a 
liny model barely an inch longtoa 
highly •sophistic a ted four-foot 
model with nearly enough built-in 
met hanic s to drive out of the EEC 
facility on its own (see sidebar, 
page II). In addition, several other 
flying vehicles were built to add 
more detail to the panoramic fly¬ 
bys. “Three of the'se- 18 " Ixick- 
ground vehic le*s were made by Bill 
George in a week and a half.” noted 
Stetson. “Since there was nothing 
crucial about them, very little 
design work was done. We* simply 
repainted them as needed." 

Most oi the vehicles in BLADE 
RUNNER, however, were real, 
built full size, and able to drive 
undei their own power through the 
short, zig-zaggingstreets of Ridley - 
\ i I le*. To tackle the job of translat¬ 
ing Mead’s designs to filx-rglass, 
tubhet and ste*e*l, Scott c hose Gene 
Winfield, an old hand at c inematic 
car customizing. 

Winfield has built a career on 
producing vehicles and props for 
television and film companies. In 
the 1960s, Winfield joined up with 
AM L, a leading model kit com¬ 
pany. building full-scale, func¬ 
tional versions of unusual mexlel 
cars to lx* used for promotional 
tours. Winfield was introduced to 
Hollywood thiough his AM Icon- 
lied ion. designing and building 
Napoleail Solo’s $35,000 c at from 
THE MAN FROM U N CL E. 
Another AMT eleal enable*d Will- 
field to de'sign STAR I REK’s full- 
size* shuttle craft. Winfield also pro¬ 
duced custom autos for GET 
SMART. IRONSIDE and T H E 
CAT, and created eight vehic lesfor 
Woody Allen s SLEEPER. 

Winlield was first contact'd on 
BLADE RUNNER while flic* pro- 
je*ct was still being shopped around 


In his hunt for the renegade replicants. Harrison Ford questions a fish dealer 
(Kimiro Hiroshige) on Anamoid Row. a stretch of sidewalk booths specializing in 
mechanical animals. The set is a clutter of confusing, often-conflicting images, and 
is one of the best examples of director Ridley Scott’s penchant for ‘‘layering.’’ 


34 




















field's shops to the set. Screenplay 
• halites also meant the reworking 
of several designs, adding to Win¬ 
field's workload. 

“At one (roiiit in the script. Seb¬ 
astian's van motor home was fea¬ 
tured much more prominently 
than it is now." Winfield said. 
“Well, that changed, hut the van 
had Ireen built by then and they 
liked it so muc h that we wound up 
making three of them. One was for 
Sebastian, of course, one was made 
over intoa converted fire true k.and 
one looked like an ambulance. All 
of these were construe ted from work- 
ed-over Dodge vans with an extra 
axle added, so that, in the end, 
they’d look like anything but .1 
Dodge van." 

Winfield also built four different 
full-scale Spinners (see sidebar, 
page .SO)—two fully si reel-opera¬ 
tional. one built out of light¬ 
weight aluminum and designed to 
Ik- “flown" by crane for on-set 
“take-offs"; and one model dubbed 
the “breakaway " Spinner, built in 
three sections to facilitate filming 


interiors on an EECi effects stage. 
“Doug Trumbull was keeping tabs 
on our work all of the time," Win¬ 
field noted. "He’d occasionally 
drop by our shop to make sure we 
were doing things that would 
match up with the miniature 
Spinners his crew were con¬ 
strue ting." 

All ol the Spinners were built to 
conform with Mead's paintings, 
right down to the "twist-wrist" 
driving system. Although innova¬ 
tive. the* engineering detail proved 
too impractical. “We warned the 
production team (hat the twist- 
wrist steering—a very complicated 
hydraulic system—would lx* hard 
for an ordinary person to drive," 
Winfield explained. “We kept say¬ 
ing that they should send somepco- 
pleover to the shop so that wecould 
train them on dri\ mg these things. 

“What we feared would happen, 
did." Winfield added. "The steer¬ 
ing systems were so critical and 
hard to drive th.it the first Spinner 
we delivered was immediately 
c rac ked up. After that, they dec ided 

THE SPINNER at rest on the rain- 
soaked neon-lit streets of Ridleyville 
(below) and in flight over the city (left). 
Scenes in the Spinner's cockpit were 
filmed on an EEG stage early in 
production; the video imagery and the 
backgrounds were both matted in later. 
This particular shot through the 
Spinner's windshield was one of the 
most complex in the film, requiring 35 
separate elements to complete. 


they didn't have the* time to teach 
jxoplr the* proper way of handling 
these things. They had the hydrau¬ 
lic s and twist-wrists pulled out and 
a regulation system installed. 
That's how these small chain-link 
steering wheels -ended up on the 
cars. They were the sma I lest, cheap¬ 
est things you could buy, and they 
ho|x‘d then size would enable them 
to film around them, so they 
wouldn't Ik* visible. I sure hope 
they never show on camera!" 

Although Windfield's contribu¬ 
tion wascruc ial. he did not built all 
ol the film's cars. In keeping with 
the re trofitting theme, modern day 
vehic les were altered for use* in the 
hac kgtound of street scenes. "Tliese 
weren't c ustom jobs in any sense of 
the word," Winfield said, "but old 
cars from the* '60s—Plymouths, 
Cadillacs and the like—that had 
been clutched up with tanks and 
(uIk‘s and stainless steel gimmicks. 
Tliey’re mixed in with my carsdur- 
ing the big traffic jam. I’m fairly 
sure that they were the handiwork 
of the* production guys, although 
there may have lx*en some input 
from Dean Jefferies, another film 
car designer." 

Although most of Winfield's 
previous custom cars have been 
prominently featured in promo¬ 
tional tours, only five of Winfield's 
25 vehicles remain intact, the rest 
were* destroyed by Mother Nature 
and Warner Bros. 

“On the night of May 14,1981, at 
around 11 o'c lock, a fire started two 
dcxrrs over from me and spread to 
our shop," Winfield recalled. "It 
totally consumed our building, 
destroyed all our hxds and equip- 
ment, and burned two of the 
BLADE RUNNER vehicles down 
to the* ground. And we were work¬ 
ing in there at the time! That fire 
really put me in a state of shexk. 
because I wasn't insured for it. We 
were working literally around (he 
cIcm k. and the fire insurance had 
simply , totally , slipped my mind. I 
finally absorbed the costs, but it 
was touch and go for awhile." 

The rest of Winfield’s cars were 
destroyed—intentionally—after the 
shcKit had wrapped. “They were 
destroyed so they wouldn't show 
up in any other movies or TV 
shows before BLADE RUNNER 
opened," Winfield said. “Theydid 
keep two Spinners, two of Deck- 
aid's sedans and one police sedan, 
though. II I'm lucky. I'll get the 
c out rac t to restore the Spinners and 
we’ll take them to Europe for a 
promotional tour!" 


Hollywood. "Universal Studios 
was budgeting the pic lure todeter- 
mine whether they were going to 
produce it." Winfield recalled. 
"They wanted me to bid on it. They 
also wanted me to dr sign the cars at 
that point. But then Universal 
drop|x*d the whole thing. 

“Four months later," Winfield 
continued. "Filmways called. I 
won the hid and went over to the 
BLADE RUNNER production 
office's. The first thing I noticed, of 
course, was that .ill of the cars had 
a I reach been designed bv Svd 
Mead." 

Working within a budget that 
was "well under $800,000." Win¬ 
field six'iit nearly six months pro- 
duc mg the needed vehic les. hiring 
a 35 member crew and working out 
of three different shops—two 
rented and his own fac ility in (im- 
oga Park. Oiiginally. Winfield was 
to build more than 50 full-scale 
vehicles; budget restrictions and 
design c hanges lowered the total to 
25. among them, eight “sub-coin- 
pact" People’s Vehicles, font taxis 
and six sedans, including Deck- 
ard’sear. 

Winfield’s cars were given more 
detailing than usual film vehic les. 
For instance, instead of flat glass 
panels in the windshields—the 
usual cost-cutting procedure— 
windscreens were fitted with 
curved plastic. However, the extra 
detailing occasionally meant dead¬ 
line problems, and many of the cars 
were delivered straight from Win¬ 


CAR CUSTOMIZER GENE WINFIELD 


W We warned them that the hydraulic, 
twist-wrist steering would he difficult to 
operate. The steering systems were so critical 
and hard to drive that the first Spinner we 
delivered was immediately cracked up. w 


35 













included more than 2.000 
individual light sources. 
Above: Chris Ross (I) and 
George Trimmer add 
painted details to molded 
foam structures in the 
foreground of the 
miniature. Only the front 
of the model was fully 
detailed, including several 
large brass towers bolted 
onto the front of the 
tables; the rear was merely rows of edged brass 
silhouettes, positioned by Ross in diminishing scale, 
after first checking the perspective with paper cutouts 
(inset). Above left Trimmer (I) and Leslie Ekker 
detailing one of the three 6 x13' tabletops used for the 
miniature landscape. Assembling the model in three 
pieces made it easier to move to the shooting stage, 
and allowed for greater flexibility when shooting the 
Infemo as a backdrop to other miniatures. Below left: 
Ekker and Trimmer (r) work on an upended tabletop, 
stringing some of the seven miles of fiber-optics 
needed to light up the set. Using industrial facilities in 
the nearby San Fernando Valley as reference, effects 
supervisor Dave Dryer used dyes to tint the lights 
various shades of red. orange and yellow. 



IV, 


PRODUCTION 


hilt- Rid 
ley Scott. Law¬ 
rence Pauli and 
Syd Mead con¬ 
centrated on de¬ 
aling a believ¬ 
able urban envi¬ 
ronment, circa 
2019. producer 
Michael Deeley 
concentrated on 
the environment of Hollywood, 
circa 1980-81. As is the case with 
most major produc (ions, the route 
from script to screen was anything 
hut smooth. 

Even figuiing out what to title 
the project was difficult. DAN¬ 
GER! )l JS DAYS wasscx»ndropped, 
and in c asting about for something 
else. BLADE RUNNER (Fords 
code name in the script) waschosen 
as a suitable working title*. It was 
not until nearly one year later that 
the title was made offic ial. 

Shortly after the name was 
chosen, it was discovered that there 
already existed two bcx>ks titled 
Blade H u ntier, one by W illiam Bur- 
roughs and the other by science 
fiction fantasy writer Alan E. 
Nourse (concerning a society 
where medical supplies are so 
scarce they are supplied by smug¬ 
glers known as "Blade Runners"). 
But by the time Deeley had licensed 
the books for the use of their titles, 
Scott & Co. had grown fond of yet 
another title. GOTHAM CITY. 
But Boh Kane, creator of Batman 
(whose adventures t<x>k place in a 
city of the same name) objected, 
and BLADE RUNNER it was. 

Finding the right actor to por¬ 
tray Deckard had been one of the 
major challenges fac ing Scott and 
Deeley from the start. After wist¬ 
fully musing on the impossibility 
of obtaining a 30-year-old Robert 
Mitchum ( “What he couldn't have 
done with this role!" Scott ex¬ 
claimed). they became interested in 
Harrison Ford. In addition to 
Ford’s obvious bankability—his 
performances as Han Solo and 
Indiana Jones have hel|x*d rake in 
more than $f>(M) million at the box 
office—they felt Ford had been 
given little opportunity to show¬ 
case his true talent as an actor. 

"Ford hasn’t been given much of 
a chance, particularly since SEAR 
WARS, to show what he’s made 
of." Deeley said." Wefelt that Dec k- 
ard’s curious mixture of emerging 
sensitivity and hard-boiled bureau¬ 
crat would lx* an excellent chance 
lot him to do that." 

Obviously, Ford agreed. "The 
story has an element of psyc hologi- 
cal drama I’ve never dealt with 
before in a film," said Ford, who 
has also starred in such recent fea¬ 
tures as FORCE 10 FROM NAVA- 
RONE, HANOVER STREET 
and THE FRISCO KID One of 
the interesting things about Rick 
Deckard is that he's fighting fear. 
Shooting people is not something 


36 















Left: Doug Trumbull (kneeling). David Dryer and assistant Leora Glass block out a shot in the EEG smoke room. The large metal half-circle behind Trumbull is pari 
of the frame of the 65mm motion-control camera. Right: Mark Stetson makes a last-minute adjustment to a miniature of the noodle bar at which Deckard is picked 
up by police, a model built by Bill George. The skyscrapers on the far left were undetailed, back-lit facades, with holes cut In to let the light through. 




When working in the smoke room 
during a shot, members of the crew 
wear gas masks to protect them 
from the oil-saturated air. 


At EEG, where there’s smoke, there’s miniatures 


Emulsified oil and computerized cameras created ultra-realistic cityscapes. 


To create the scenic vistas that 
BLADE RUNNER'S flying cars soar 
through involved the close harmony 
between the modelmaker’s art and 
the science of motion-control 
photography 

While detailed models have been a 
staple of movie making for genera¬ 
tions. computerized motion-control 
systems—which enables the camera 
to repeat movements exactly —are a 
relatively new innovation. ' What 
could be called motion control was 
used fairly successfully on 2001.'* 
explained Doug Trumbull. “It 
consisted of very clumsy motors, 
linked up to gear boxes, which were 
taken off lathe machines, which were 
hooked to timing belts, which were 
hooked up to lead screws. The whole 
thing was very clumsy and it only ran 
at one speed But nevertheless, it 


Below: Effects supervisor Dave 
Dryer looks through the lens of 
the 65mm motion-control camera 
to check a smoke-room set-up for 
a Spinner fly-by. Although the 
buildings are almost laying on 
their sides, they'll appear vertical 
as the camera spirals down toward 
the Precinct Station (far left). Right: 
The completed set-up, lit and ready 
to film. Note the rounded building 
in the lower center—that's actually 
the “Millennium Falcon” on its edge 
redressed as a futuristic skyscraper. 


was motion control." 

The state-of-the-art has advanced 
quite a bit in the intervening 15 years, 
and BLADE RUNNER'S flying scenes 
were photographed on Trumbull’s 
own "Icebox'' system, developed for 
use on CE3K and able to control 
camera direction, exposure, lighting 
and movement of articulated models. 

With nearly 35 separate Spinner/ 
flying shots, the three EEG motion- 
control systems used in the film— 
whose tracks are laser-leveled and 
epoxied onto the floor for perfect 
steadiness—became crucial mechan¬ 
ical components. "We'd rehearse a 
motion-control move by first 
programming it and then repeatedly 
looking at the shot in black and 
white." said effects supervisor David 
Dryer "When it was smoothed out 


and looked like it was doing what it 
was supposed to do. we'd take the 
system through a production shot.” 

Most effects houses shoot models 
in bright lighting against a blue 
screen But EEG shoots their models 
in "smoke" to give them texture, 
pulling high-contrast mattes in a 
separate, no-smoke pass 

EEG's smoke room is 40 feet wide 
and 65 feet deep, and equipped with 
infrared sensors that constantly 
measure and control the density of 
the smoke (actually, emulsified oil 
suspended in air). The smoke is 
exceptionally irritating, so operators 
monitor the shots from separate 
booths When "hands-on" contact is 
needed, gas masks must be worn by 
the crew (right). 



























cover story on “Illegal Aliens" by R. 
Scott; Kill, whose motto is "All the 
News That's Fit to Kill"; Fash, a 
large-format fashion magazine 
featuring an article on "Spray-on 
Swimwear"; Creative Evolution, and 
Horn, the skin mag of the future, with 
an article on "Hot Lust in Space 

Southwell s original designs were 
reproduced with a Xerox color 
copier, cut to size and glued directly 
to the covers of existing magazines, 
such as Omni and Playboy Although 
the Xerox process was relatively 
crude, it was the only reproduction 
method fast enough to meet the 
deadline. 

Delivered to the set. the 2019 
magazines were mixed in with a 
number of contemporary magazines 
titles, including Scott's favorite. 
Heavy Metal, and the punkish Wef* 
The Magazine For Gourmet Bathers 

Like most of his other work, the 
magazine covers can barely be 
glimpsed on camera, becoming just 
another component in Scott's so- 
called "700-layer cake " 

"I was always aware that my 
designs were a small tile in the 
overall mosaic," Southwell said. "In 
the case of the magazine covers— 
which were intentionally raw and 
unfinished—Ridley had simply 
wanted a fuzzy visual backdrop for 
the newsstand It might have been 
nice to have gotten a closer view of 
those magazines, though I'd put the 
names of all the top production crow 
right there on the covers.’’ 


Signage Of The Times 


Creating Ridleyville’sposters, patches, logos 
and decals, and a newsstand full of in-jokes. 


A last-minute assignment to create background detail for a Ridleyville newsstand resulted in nearly a dozen unique 
magazine covers (including the three below), and some of the film's wittiest touches. Illustrator Tom Southwell included 
names of key personel where possible—note articles bylined by M. Deeley. R. Scott and L.G. Pauli on cover of "MONI." 


Ridley Scott didn't want the sets of 
BLADE RUNNER to look like sets. 
Rather, he wanted audiences to think 
they were actually seeing what Los 
Angeles would look like in the year 
2019. To help make Ridleyville real, 
illustrator Tom Southwell spent six 
months creating background graph¬ 
ics—a subliminally-perceived collage 
of magazines, posters, municipal 
signage and $100,000 worth of neon. 

While little of Southwell’s work is 
prominently featured on screen— 

except, of course, 
for the neon—the 
typographic as¬ 
sortment greatly 
adds to the overall 
impact of a lived- 
in environment. 

"Lawrence Pauli 
turned a number 
of graphic illus¬ 
tration tasks over 
to me." explained 
Southwell, a 1972 
graduate of New 
York's Pratt Insti¬ 
tute. “It rapidly 
grew into quite an 
assignment. I was 
with the film for 
six months doing 
this." During this 
period. Southwell 
designed the 
oriental neon signs 
signs lor WALK/ ('"eluding the 
DON'T WALK tongue-wagging 
White Dragon 

hovering over Deckard's noodle bar), 
warning stickers for the parking 
meters (shown page 22). and the 
trafficators' "Walk/Don't Walk" 
symbols (shown above). 

Southwell—whose previous film 
experience included stints as 
production illustrator for ANNIE. 
RAISE THE TITANIC and THE 
MUPPET MOVIE—contributed to 
several departments involved with 
the film. For the costume designers, 
he provided the insignia, patches 
and badge worn by police officers. 


Above: Tom Southwell's 
designs for (from top): 
Spinner decal; taxicab 
logo; restaurant trade¬ 
mark; and symbol for 
"Computer Repairs." 
Right: cover of 2019‘s 
leading men's magazine. 


To the crews building the full-scale 
Spinners, he designed a license 
plate, jagged serial numbers and 
other decals, and also the three- 
dimensional "Spinner" logo, which 
was positioned on the rear of the car 
Southwell also assisted Pauli and 
art director David Snyder in detailing 
the New York Street set—designing 
everything from advertising posters 
for drugs and cars to signs for the 
numerous storefronts And working 
from Syd Mead's original concept 
sketch for the VidPhon. Southwell 
prepared the actual phone graphics. 


including Deckard's VidPhon credit 
card (shown page 28). 

Southwell's most interesting 
assignment—certainly the one that 
gets the most attention—was design¬ 
ing 2019's magazine covers—a last- 
minute job that produced some of 
the most humorous examples of 
what life might be like in 2019. Given 
just four days to come up with covers 
suitable for a Ridleyville newsstand. 
Southwell created a number of 
startling titles, including Krotch 
(going for $29 a copy); Moni, with a 


38 






































he likes lodo. So even though he’sa 
pm in good oih*. he’s a reluctant 
clem me at liest. I h.it ambivalence 
is an inteiestiug lac el <>i hist liarac - 
ter. I le also gels In al up a lot." 

Pic keel lot tliec i uc ial loleol Ron 
K.iitv svas Holland's Rutget Hauer, 
perhaps Ix-st known to Ametican 
audience's lot his recent peifoi- 
malice as Allx*rt S|mci hi the- 1 A* 
ininisciies INSIDE I III IIIIRI) 
RI K II I lie- .18* year-old actor — 
whose- well-develo|K*d foun makes 
him |H‘ilee t to|x>ttia\ asu|xi-deve- 
lope-el militaiN replicant — has 
appealed in neai In 20 features, 
including* the Osc at-nominated 
SOLDIER OF FORTUNE and 
NIC. 11 I HAWKS, in which Ire- 
played a tenorist. 

C>ther east membeis include 
Sean Yount* (S I RIPI Skis Rae hael. 
Fold s leplicant lovei; Felward 
James Olmos (an Indian steel- 
woikci in WOLFEN. and “El 
Pachim» in /( )() I M l I i as( .all. 
Ford’s jealous sidekick; and Joe 
Fuikel (the ghost Is bar tender in 
11 IF SHI NINO) as 1’yrell. 

I .ale in 1980. w hi le* hiindieds of 
designers. actois and technicians 
were massing totvaids the stall ol 
fiii nc ipal photographs. an abrupt 
event lie-ails sank BLADE REN¬ 
NER the 1 1 Ini’s financial backeis 
sudele ills pedicel out ol the- film. 

“ 1 he- mmol svas that Fihmvays 
ele-e iele-el to pul I hen money Ix-hind 
allothei project." said a soutce 
close to the production. “Gossip 
hael it dial the other mosie- was 
BLOW Ol* I .which cost about $16 
million. It that's tine. someone 
made a big mistake*.’* 

In a turn-about that must have 
struck Phil Dick as |xxiic justice. 
Scott and Deeles Inst licaid about 
the* Filmways disaster bs leading 
the trade papeis. I he stall could 
not have happened at a worse* time*. 
Prc'ptoduc lion svas beginning to 
wind down, and il anew hac kc-i was 
not cpiiekls found, it might prove 
iui|x>ssible to reassemble the crew. 
Scott was also se t indued Dl’N’F 
next (.in assignment which has 
siiiee- gone tc» Das id Lsne Id and il 
Filinsvass’ pull-out delaseel pro¬ 
duction. BLADE RLNN1-R might 
lx- without a dim lor. Woise, a 
Diiec tor's Guild stiike was planned 
fot the- suinmei ol 1981. II the IiIni 
was delaseel too long, nobody 
would lx- dim ling. 

Happils. the- turnaround was 
brief. Aftei approac lung more*than 
ado/e*ncompanies. De-eles received 
Ikic king—oil a budge t now at $22 
million—from Tandem Prexluc- 
lion exec utises Jerry Perenchio 
and Bud Yolkin; additional costs 
were absnihed bs I lie l.aelel Gom- 
pans. whose director. Alan Laelel 
Jr., hael given the go-ahead to 
STAR WARS and ALIEN while a 
top executive at 20th Century-Fox. 

AI lei neat Is a s ear o( preprcxluc- 
lion. BLADE Rl’NNER’s princi¬ 
pal photographs got undersvay on 
Match 0. 1081. three months latei 
than first plannc*d. Since most of 



SEBASTIAN S HOME was set in the 
historic Bradbury Building, although its 
appearance in the film (inset top) 
hardly resembles the Los Angeles 
street on which it actually stands. The 
building s Renaissance exterior was 
dressed with large barley columns and 
a tattered canopy extending out into 
the street, to which futuristic traffic 
lights, parking meters and video 
monitors were added. A Matt Yuricich 
matte painting created the towering 
cityscape in the background. The hold¬ 
out matte (inset bottom) shows the 
extent of the live-action element. This is 
a blow-up of a 65mm interpositive, the 
low-contrast stock to which Yuricich 
must match his colors (see sidebar, 
page 47). Above: Sebastian exits his 
customized van. designed by Syd Mead 
and built by Gene Winfield. Since 
Sebastian is a tinkerer. the car is meant 
to look homemade, cobbled out of a 
variety of old and new components. 


the him is set .it night, ill.it's when 
mm h ol tin- shooting took place, 
loo. I h.it meant that lunch svas 
not malls lu-lil after midnight and 
filming would svrap at 1 or a in the 
morning. I bis grueling pace 
forced Scott and other kes person¬ 
nel to sms is c* on an average of lout 
hours of sleep, as it svas usually 
onls a short time bet ween the end of 
filming and the sc reeningof dailies 
tin- next morning. 

Defies had originally scouted a 
number of actual urban locations, 
but it was sexm agreed that the pos¬ 
sibility of residentssaiidali/ing the 
elaborate sets was «x> great a risk. 
Instead, the film’s exteriors were 
shot on one of the largest—and cei- 
tainly most widely seen—standing 
set in Hollywcxxl: Warner’s New 
Yoik Street set. Built moic- than . r >() 
years ago. the set has been used for 
sue h diverse (areas ANNIE and the 
Dead End Kids feature's, as svell as 
the- setting for such detective clas¬ 
sic s as I I IF MAL I ESE FALCON 
and Fill BIG SLEEP. 

The dimensions of the New York 
set are as impressive as its history. 


Ihc- II-sha)M-d area is a full cits 
bloc k long, though w ith its various 
intersections and off-shoots, the 
stoiefronts and brownstones would 
stifleh foi several blocks if “tin- 
folded." At the west end of the street 
svas an intersection dublx-d the 
“nightc lubarea.*' with bars, restau¬ 
rants and department stores. At the 
opposite end was an X-shaped 
mu isec tic»n. svliic h lx-camea small 
version of Times Square. “At one 
|M)int we were going to hang a huge 
sciec-n on this facade and throw 
fiont-projected plates of sumo 
wrestlerson it.’’ Pauli said, “but sve 
never got around to it." 

Flic- basic construction of Rid- 
less die took ten weeks, with an 
additional month devoted to set 
dressing. “It svas a very tight sc lie-d¬ 
ull*." Pauli said. In the nightc luh 
area, for example, were were liter- 
alls finishing updetailsduring (lie- 
day lot that night's shinning." 

In addition to studio work. Sc ott 
staged seseial sequences in and 
around several Los Angeles lexa- 
tions, layering actual cits streets 
with 2019 hardware, and lettiiigthe 


effects cress* matte in inega-struc- 
i in in in the- distance*. Most of the 
Precinct Station interiors, for 
example, svere shot over four 
nights at L. A s l moil Station. 

Another actual location was 
used lot the home of J. F. Sebastian 
(William Sanderson), a shy genius 
who s|x-nds his leisure hours pro- 
cluc iug astonishingly realistic toys 
for the* upper strata of 2010's 
society. Kc-s scenes were staged in 
and around the historic Bradbury 
Building in downtown Ijis Angeles, 
whic h was commissioned in 1891 
bs millionaire Lewis Bradbury and 
designed bs George Wyman. 

“I imagined that this had once 
Ix-c'ii a marvelous old hotel, but 
because of the off-world coloniza¬ 
tion push. Sebastian is the only 
(x-rson lising theie,” Pauli said. 
"I fee hose what used to be the Pi evi¬ 
dential Suite, and had done it up in 
a son of neo-c lassie al. French-Vic- 
torian design.'* Ironically, the 
building's design had been inspired 
by Edsvard Bellamy's Looking 
Backward , an earls utopian novel 
set in the* year 2000 that featured 







39 
















W What I've done in RAIDERS OF THE 
LOST ARK and BLADE RUNNER is ‘Physical 
Acting. ’ Stunts are falling off a tall building or 
crashing a car, something you're silly enough 
to think isn’t going to hurt the next day. w 


HARRISON FORD 


clfM tipi ions ol the new buildings. 

Sebastian's seven-room suite 
was constructed on the Bmliank 
lot. with windows and other sit tic - 
dual details keyed to the Kradbuty 
building. But finding the pi«»|x*i 
furniture and decoration fot the 
sprawling set was difficult. "We 
ended up renting. Iiorrowing and 
stealing objects from .ill o\ei 
town." Pauli said. " I wool Scbas- 
tian's rcxmis are actually set up 
with units from MY PAIR LADY.” 
1 lie set was painted with a sjx*c ial 
rublxr-lxiscd com))ouud that |x*c*lcd 
as it di ied. c reating an suitably t un- 
down appearanc e. 

Peeling paint was a subtle tom h; 
Sebastian’s fascinating collection 
of toys and automatons, however, 
upstaged such nuances. Dancets. 
soldiers and c loc kwork figure's lit¬ 
ter the set. many actually objrls 
d art hundreds of years old, ol>- 
(.11111*11 from Lenny Marvin, a col- 
lec tor of antique automatons. 

“Once Ridley saw Marvin's 
automatons, he decided to use 
dwarves as automaton extras." 
Pauli said, 'll you keep you I eyes 
ojHii you’ll ser them: .‘f-loot-tall 
li\ing automatons who greet Nc*l>- 
astian when he conic's home. Rid¬ 
ley also used suitably made-up 
extras to suggest that the toys were 
all automatons. For example, there 
were some women in Ixxly stock¬ 
ings standing up against the alley 
walls surrounded by genuine man¬ 
nikins. Your eye doesn't quite take 
them in at fitst. Then suddenly, 
one of those* women will ever-so- 
slightly move. Very freaky.*’ 

Hie Builiank Studios housed a 


total ol 17 sets ill addition toScbas- 
ii.m\ apartment. Among the most 
impressive was the office ol Lyrell. 
the head ol the* firm that produce's 
the* Nexus-b icplic ants. 

" I be concept of the. Lyrell coi- 
|xrration is a kind ol tongue-in- 
< luc k extia|x>laiion ol what might 
hap|M*n if c intent c*x|h*i linen tat ion 
in DNA devc*lo|K*d into a largccon- 
glomerate,’’ said Ridley Scott. 
“This sott ol business certainly 
wouldn’t content itself with pio- 
duc ing bat teria that gobble's upoil 
spills. It would blanch out into 
t'litcrtainmcm. aerospace oi any 
other avenue it loutid o|x*n to its 
expansion." 

Lyrell’s office mc*asurc*d l.tiOO 
scpiate feti and featured 20-fcx»t 
high columns, a lilac k mai I)IcII<mm 
and a huge pic tine window through 
which the* surrounding industrial 
complex call lx* set'll (see photos, 
page 12) " I’heonly ccnnpai able set 
I can tc'inemlx'i in this context was 
Edward (». Robinson's office in 
LI III I CAESAR," said Pauli. 

" Lite* sc a I col lyrellsolfic c is mliti- 
iiiati It dwai fs the jx*ople wit hill its 
space*.’’ 

Originally. Pauli wanted to 
build tbe set completely out of mai- 
Ide. but the budget couldn’t afford 
it. I lis next approacb feat 110 * 1 ! raw 
concrete and granite. "I did a lot ol 
research in the modnne style," 
Pauli explained. ’’I also wanted 
Lyrell’s office to striae kof a neo-fas- 
cist 01 'Establishment Gothic' 
look, because that was the c liarac - 
ter ol tin* man—he literally tail bis 
empire from a tower." 

Another spiawling set was built 


lot Dec kaid’s a pal 1 mem. designed 
to reflect IxmIi bis bac lie-lot IickhI 
and the oppiessive aimosplu*re ol 
bis c'liiploymeni. Although it was 
c*qiiip|xd with numerous lugh 
tec li gadgets. Dec k.lid’s apaituient 
was given ic'latively mundane fur¬ 
nishings. "Ridley spec 1 1 11 a 11 \ 
asked loi an unusual color sc heme 
on all ol die applianc c s." noted Sytl 
Mead, "It was a baked ixoix bx»k 
cpiitc* fashionable in the 1920s. 
Sc oil liked die antiqued leelmg ol 
the e nameling, but when the paint 
we used loi it got cliit\. it really 
looked awful. But that didn’t slop 
Ridlex —be* wanted tospiay finger - 
pi mis and grease stains all ovei the 
clcxu ol die f reiver." 

Allot hci lion-studio location 
was used lot Chew's Ice I louse*, 
w belt a valued mcmlxi ol 1 ‘yiell’s 
stall (Jainc*s Hong) is interrupted 
111 bis mic ro-suigical genetic 
design wenk h\ two thoroughly 
|x*e\ed ic plic ants. Iwo (lavs were 
s|x*nt lilming in a meal lcxke*i in 
Wtnon. Cuilifotilia, in tc*ui|x*ia- 
tuies that dip|xd Ix-low /no. after a 
ctew s|m-iii nc'aily a wee k dealing 
the icy build up. painstakingly 
adding layer serf water toiheobjcc is 
ill the* lex Mil. 

Additional v isiial tone lies lot the 
Ice I louse—and loi seveial other 
scene's—were* supplied by Modem 
Props, an incle|x’ndent outfit that 
c ontributed to STAR I REK-Ilaitd 
LSCAPL FROM NEW ^()RK 
Working with Linda Dc.Scemia. 
die film’s set dc'coialoi. Modem 
Plops’ majoi assignmeni lax in 
producing tin* strange* optical 
insti umc'iil w b ic b c an lx* see n bus¬ 
tling in the icehouse* (the same 
unusual lixiiiiealsoap|M*.iis mom 
Aiiamoid Row Ixxitli). 

"We have* a large sloe k ol 
iiicmIiiIc’s. light panels and com¬ 
putet readouts," said tin* film’s 
president. John /ahi 11 c k\. "In lac 1 . 
we liaxc* so nine h niaiei ial on hand 
that it even threw Ridlex a Im. lie 
bad c ome s|x*c if ic allx down loom 
lacilitx to ge t an idea ol what lie 
xvanted loi Chew's machine, and 
Ix’loic* xve knew it. be* was 1 unimag- 
ing around and saying. Til take 
tliis. and dial, and ibis 

Muc b ol the* film’sac tion involves 
the siis| H'lisel 11 1 cal and mouse 
chase Ixixxeen Batty and Deckaid. 
Staged piimaiily on die- Bin bank 
lot. the* sc-quc ncc- staiis when Batty 
bmsis into Sebastian's apaitmeni 
after Deckaid lias "tc-immaled’’ 
Pi is ( D.iix I I laimali). 

"I v\allied to dc teitmnc Baity’s 
physical sii|xrioriiy from the fit si 


moments ol the* e base." Sc ott said. 
"In older to demonstrate bis s|x*eel. 

I posed llanison in an ambush 
position neai a dooi ol the* apait- 
mc'iit. I’lieii Rutgei 11 alter enured 
another door faither down the- 
1 cx >111 at a normal cameia s|xrd. 

I towever. Ix'fore lie ccmiIcI exit die 
liamc*. I bad die camera under* 
cianked. and lie Ixgan to physi¬ 
cally slow down, exaggerating bis 
movements xeiy. xeix, carefully. 

I lie* combination of nucleic tank¬ 
ing and slow movement on tlic-pait 
ol the ac ic m 1 c sulls in a 1 at f h i c 011- 
x me ing but si ol s|x*ed.” 

Much attc*niion was given to 
Lord’s 1 11 c*ai in. Altei lejec ting one 
Inttn istic Sxd Mead design (it was 
cxentually turned on its side* and 
used as a telephone). Scott settled 
011 a lelatively eoiiveiitional-lexik- 
ing xvc*a|xMi. ”\Ve all fell that a 
In iglit streak ol light coming out ol 
a I xi ire I bad Ixtotnc a boiiible 
c lie he*, and we were* sic k to death of 
it," Sc oil said. We transformed 
some (•c'iniau Hare guns into large 
calibei weapons that Deckaid 
could use to slu xm si la iglit thiougli 
|K*c)plc*. 1 lie'll Dax id Dixei c .lineup 
with the idea that the pistols dis¬ 
charged a high intensity material 
dial iniplcxlc'd oncontac t.chawing 
in so muc h light on the* wax that it 
lx*came a black lx*am instead ol .i 
light streak. Wedublxd it the Blac k 

I lole gull." Although plans c ailed 
|c m an animated effect, Scott latei 
decided against post produc lion 
enhatic (incut. 

As usual. Fold did most ol bis 
own stunts. "I term vvliat I’ve done 
m RAIDERS and BLADE Rl’N- 
NER "Physical Acting,”’ Lord 
explained. "Stunts are lalling of I a 
tall building cm clashing a cai. 
something you'ie silly enough to 
think isn’t going to hint the* next 
day." 

Bx any oiliei name*. Lord did 
most ol the punching, running 
climbing, and hanging-oil him- 
self. When Lot cl loses liisgi ipxx Idle 
hanging on a window ledge, the 
only thing smiling him was a 
tetliei allac bed to his waist (an ail 
bag xv.is plac eel 10feet below, just in 
case*). However, exen Lord knows 
whe n it’s time to turn the* trench- 
coat over to someone else*: a leap 
Ixiween two buildings was the 
work ol a stuntman 

(ionic ally. some of Lord’s most 
dangerous moments before the 
camera were caused bx the* camera 

II sc -11. "We were using a (0111111 
Mite lie-11 c ameia—».‘h the third one 
old 111.111 Mitchell exei made— 
whic h weighed about 7f> |xmiiic 1 s.’’ 
explained Dryer, xvlio sii|xrviscd 
engineer a shot Icxrking straight 
clown cmi Lord (see photos, page 
17). "With that kind of weight e an¬ 
ti lexeied (Mil over Lord, there was 
alxvaysa 1 isk that tlicc ameia would 
break a casting and conic light 
clown on him. So we tigged a s|x*- 
c ial plate and sup|x>rt to gc*^ that 
camera actually looking back 
down over itscll." 


Deckard s apartment (below) was a sprawling, five-room set furnished with 
antiques and high-tech hardware. The set was done in a Mayan motif, which 
echoes the look of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Ennis-Brown house, which 
served as the entry way to Deckarcfs huge, cantivelered condominium complex. 



f 


t 


r 








A police Spinner banks smoothly as it flies through the concrete canyons of Los Angeles, a breathtaking composite of miniatures, matte paintings and front- 
projected artwork. The Spinner was a four-foot miniature (shown inset, with its internal electronics switched on), photographed separately in an EEG smoke room. 

It flies through the air with the greatest of ease..._ 

A 4-foot miniature stood in for Harrison Ford’s Spinner as it soared through the skies ofRidleyville. 




Although operable, full-scale 
versions of the flying police vehicles 
were built, miniature "spinners" were 
needed for shots of the car in flight, 
and to interract with the various 
miniature buildings constructed 

Four different sized Spinners were 
built: a 15" version was used for long 
shots in flight; a 4'4" version was 
used to buzz the Precinct Station; a 
tiny. 1" model was placed on a model 
of the Tyrell Pyramid roof; and a 
4 -scale model, nearly four feet in 
length, was used for the bulk of the 
flying shots. 

Weighting 65 pounds, and costing 
nearly $50,000. the so-called "Hero 
Spinner" was sculpted by Tom Pahk and 
incorporated a dazzling variety of sophisti¬ 
cated functions. "There were two wing-like 
side panels and two articulated rear panels 
that opened up like an insect rubbing its 
wings together, and two wheel covers that 
rotated up or down." explained Mark 
Stetson, who supervised the film s minia¬ 
ture work. "It also had a dash that lit up just 
like the full-size car." 

In addition, two 18" puppets, repre¬ 
senting Harrison Ford and Edward 
James Olmos. were sculpted by Bill 
George, and articulated to include moving 


heads and arms Bob Johnson was 
responsible for the Spinner's 
mechanical effects 

Like the other miniatures in the 
film, the Hero Spinner was 
photographed in an EEG smoke 
room. Generally, two or three passes 
were needed: one with the model lit 
normally; and one or two passes for 
"effects" lighting, including head¬ 
lights and the flashing lights on the 
roof (shown top left). 

Long shots often required the use 
of a 15" model because the EEG 
stages weren't big enough to make 


the huge Hero Spinner look small on 
film "We only had 72 feet of (motion 
control] track to work with." 
explained effects supervisor David 
Dryer. "Even with a 28mm lens— 
which is quite wide for 65mm film— 
the Hero Spinner was too big in the 
frame to give the feeling that it was 
coming from way off in the distance." 

The large-scale miniature was 
meant to intercut seamlessly with the 
full-scale vehicles under construc¬ 
tion. At times, it was a challenging 
assignment. For instance, the "wig¬ 
wag" lights (those red and blue 


spinning lights found on most police 
vehicles) had to match the exact 
rotation and pulsation of the full- 
scale Spinners. 

"We shot the model on the EEG 
stage with appearance' lights that we 
could merely turn on and off. This 
was our wig,'" Stetson explained. 
"Then, using motion control, we 
returned the camera and model to 
the start and attached an appliance 
with a set of quartz lights mounted in 
cylinders with lenses (shown below, 
left), which sent out a beam of light 
through a hole. The cylinder rotated 
so that it cast this beam around. 

When we did the second shot with 
no other lighting involved, all you saw 
were these rotating beams of light. That 
was our wag.' 

"By carefully planning out the rotational 
sequence of the real cars to our models 
beforehand." explained Stetson, "we 
ended up with a perfect synchronization 
between the two " 

Although the Hero Spinner was indeed 
impressive. Stetson reflected the mood of 
many of the modelmakers "We all felt that 
the model wasn't properly used," he said. 

"It never got its due in the final print. You 
just never saw enough of it, really." 


Below; Modelmaker Bill George sculpted this 
figure of Harrison Ford (shown assembled, 
but still unpainted) for the %-scale “Hero" 
Spinner. A shaft through the neck let the 
head move while the car was photographed. 


Left The 45"-long Spinner, prior to final 
detailing and weathering. The apparatus on 
the roof created sweeping beams of light 
during motion-control photography. Below: 
Bill George wires up the detailed cockpit 








































EFFECTS 


f y was < leaf 
from the outset 
(hat (hr him 
would require 
mm h in the way 
of sophisticated 
spec ial effects. 
However. Rid¬ 
ley Scott wanted 
more than just 
flashy optic als, 
he wanted \isuals that would fit in 
seamlessly with the gritty, ultra- 
realistic look that i harac teri/ed the 
rest of the film's design. 

He 1111111*11 to one of the indus¬ 
try’s true "wizards," Douglas 
Trumbull and his newly-formed 
Entertainment Effects Group, 
located in Venice, California. 
Founded with long-time assoc iate 
Riihaid Yuricich, EEC is one of 
the most advanced and well- 
eqmppcd effects shops in the 
industry. 

“We have the largest, most com¬ 
plete s|x*cial effects facility in the 
world, hat none," boasted Trum¬ 
bull. who cut his teeth as an effects 
supervisor on 2001. and hasgoneto 
to create the effects fot CE3K, 
S EAR TREK—'IMPand SILENT 
RUNNING, a lihrihealsodirec ted. 
"Weabsorbed most of Paramount's 
s|x*c ial effec ts o|x*ration when we 
moved into this facility, and now 
we're geated up with the total 
effects equipment spectrum: op¬ 
tical printers, our own 70mmcam¬ 
eras, multi-plane* and motion c on- 
ttol systems—everything. I think I 
can safely say that what we have is 
significantly larger and moieeom- 
plete than either II.M or |Jolm 
Dykstra's] Apogee.’’ 

Regardless of whic h elfec tsfae il- 
ity is the biggest, it's cleat that 
Trumbull assembled an expe¬ 
rienced team ol artists .ind engi- 
neers fot the projec t: Ric haul Yuri- 
cic h would, with Trumbull, co-di- 
rect the entire operation: Robert 
Hall would head up the* optic als 


TYRELL’S OFFICE was a giant set 
on the Burbank lot. enhanced by a 
matte painting by Matthew Yuricich. 
Originally, the scene was filmed with a 
front-projected plate of the miniature 
pyramid thrown behind the actors, with 
yellow-gel arcs hung over the set to 
suggest sunlight streaming in through 
the window (inset top left). The front- 
projection plate was needed before the 
miniature pyramid was completely 
finished, so the available pieces were 
assembled, photographed and 
retouched by Yuricich. However, the 
final result was deemed unsatisfactory. 
"The front projection turned out to be a 
little softer than Trumbull wanted, so in 
I went with my paintbrush." said 
Yuricich. who eventually repainted 
most of the view through the windows, 
the ceiling and parts of the columns. 
(Note extent of hold-back matte, inset 
bottom left.) Yuricich also repainted the 
wall on the right side of the set because 
it had come out too dark as originally 
photographed by cinematographer 
Jordan Cronenweth. The sun coming 
through the huge office window was 
cel artwork, animated at EEG under the 
supervision of John Wash and optically 
inserted into the painting. 

wasn't .it all sure of my credentials 
oi capabilities." Dryer recalled. 
"He was constantly dcnible-cbec k¬ 
ing with Ric hard oi Doug on my 
ideas. I c an’t say that I blame him. 
really, lint as time went on, Ridley 
understcxxl that I was delivering 
the goods he was ex|x*cting from 
me." 

Trumbull had been involved 
with BLADE RHNNER s minia¬ 
ture shooting foi about a month 
when Dryer was signed totheptoj- 
ect in April. 1981. "Doug and I 
overlapp'd ea< h other for a week," 
Dryer explained. "He had already 
shot a few straight, non-back- 
ground takes of the Eyrell Pyra¬ 
mid. It then became clear that his 
commitment to BRAINSTORM 
prec hided his day-to-day involve¬ 
ment. However, he would cxca- 
sionally chop in when he had the 
time. 

"The fact that I was so heavily 
involved is certainly not meant to 
downgrade either 'Trumbull's, 


team (as he had clone on CE3R); 
Dave Stewart was pic kedasdirec tor 
of effects photography: Gleg Jem 
would steer the* miniatures depart¬ 
ment; clec ironics and motion c on- 
tiol systems design would lx*su|x*r- 
vised by Evan Wetmore; and Mat¬ 
thew Yuricich would handle tlu* 
film’s numerous matte paintings. 

"Generally, my job on BLADE 
RUNNER was a su|x*rvisory one." 
Iiumhull explained. "Richard 
Yuricich and I would conceive of 
the technique, design and general 
approach to any effects problem, 
and then direct the entire crew 
towards the end prcxluc t of creating 
believable illusions. I bis in< luded 
supervising lighting and |x*rs|x*c- 
live and deciding which photo¬ 
graphic prex esses would lx* used. I 
just put it all together." 

Although designing almost all 
of the film's effects shots. Trum- 
bull’s stint on (he prcxluc tion was 
relatively short-lived. For years, he* 
had txrn attempting to launch 


another project that would not 
only see him orchestrating the* 
effects but directing as well. As 
BLADE RUNNER’S effects work 
began to gear up. I t unibull 
received the* go-ahead from MGM 
on BRAINSTORM, a film he 
would direc t, co-author and c reate 
the* effects for. (Natalie Wood's 
de ath near the errd of prcxluc tion 
fias thrown th.it project into con- 
troversy. See story, page I I.) 

With Trumbull preoccupied 
with BRAINSTORM, and with 
partner Ric hard Yuricich shifting 
his attention to that projec t as well, 
39-year-old David Dryer was 
brought in to supervise the actual 
shooting of the effects. Tall and 
lean, and invariably well-dressed. 
Dryer is a I96f> graduate of tin* 
U.S.C. Film Sc hool. For most of his 
career, lie's designed and directed 
television commerc ials—the* same 
high-pressure background that 
produced Ridley Scott. 

"When I first came on, Ridley 


42 









Yuricich’s or Scon's contribu- 
lions,'* Dryer added. "Their inpul 
and invention was great. Inc iden¬ 
tally, Scott doesn't ever consider 
how difficult something is if he 
wants it. If you made Ridley happy, 
thru you’d really done something 
to Ik* proud of." 

Trumbull had originally set upa 
preproduc lion plan calling for 105 
effects shots; a budget cut-hack 
dropped the* number of effects shots 
to 35, "the* same number that had 
been executed on ALIEN," Dryer 
noted. “We were given $2 million 
to do those 35 effects, hut many 
shots went through considerable 
alteration when Ridley got drc*|M*r 
into the production and saw just 
exac tly what he wanted todo. Even¬ 
tual l> . the* number was increased to 
85 shots. Our final budget alsoesc a- 
lated. but not by mire h. 

"It was with a great deal of satis- 
faction that we managed to come in 
just under budget, within $5,000of 
our estimate," Dryer added with a 
smile. " Hurt's something that you 
don't see happening too often on 
an effects-heavy film like this. In 
fact, it almost tmrr happens." 

Three EEG stage's were primar¬ 
ily use*d: the "smoke" room; Stage 
2. where the smaller motion-con¬ 
trolled Spinner traffic was photo¬ 
graphed on a 72-foot track: and the 
Gompsey stage*, where the* majority 
of flat work, multiplanec loutlsand 
interior Spinner video imagery was 
filmed. The 22.000-square-foot 
facility also contained the work¬ 
shops where one of the* film’s larg¬ 
est miniatures took shape—the* 
industrial complex called the 
Hack's Landsca|x*—and referred to 
by the cast and crew as Ridley’s 
Inferno—a I3'xl8' forced-perspec¬ 
tive tabletop (see photos jiagc* 20- 
21,36). 

"It is this incredible sort of New 
Jersey industrial wasteland gone 
beserk," Trumbull explained. “It 
has thousands of light sources, the 
Tyrell Pyramids, and spouting 
flames burning off toxic gasesfrom 
towering smokestacks. To obtain 
thesceffec ts necessitated a rigorous¬ 
ly-controlled combination of mini¬ 
ature's, motion control pusses and 
front projection." 

Front projection, specifically, 
was used to produce the* sulfurous 
flames s|x*wing from the land- 
scape’s towers. A small crew under 
the direction of Rolxii S|x*iluck 
shot a number of high-speed 35mm 
gasoline explosions, which were 
then projected onto white foam 
cards slotted into the* top of the* 
miniature towers during a second 
computer-controlled exposure. 

"All you’d see on the negative 
was the fire." Dryer explained. 
"This was latei optically added 
with a cover matte, so that you 
wouldn't sec too many of the other 
light sources through the flames.” 

Two Tyrell Pyramids are visible 
in the bac kground of the* land- 
scape. Although major pyramid 
scenes were shot separately and 



w We had so many in-camera passes and 
flashing lights in some shots that we couldn’t 
feed all the information into the computer. 
We actually had guys sitting around with 
switches to turn some lights off and on. ■■ 


matted in. long shots employed 
large transparencies physically 
mounted onto the miniature set. 
“Sine c the* perspective of an objec t 
that big and that faraway is almost 
flat anyhow, there's nothing to 
giveaway the fact that they're really 
only stills,” Dryer said. 

Flic* table-top was constructed 
over a plexiglass foundationund lit 
from beneath. In addition, miles of 
fibci optics were threaded into the* 
landsca|M‘ and hookc*d up to 20 
small boxes, each equipped with 
several small projection bulbs 
whose brightness was controlled 
by Trumbull's "Icebox" motion 
control computer (dcvelo|x*d for 
use on CE3K. and also usc*d for 
STAR I REK— IMP). The com¬ 
puter had been programmed to not 
only suggest steady illumination, 
but a number of flickering flame 
sources. 

"We’d drive everything we could 
on the 'Icebox’ (named for its bulky 
appearance]" Trumbull noted. 
“In some shots, though, where we 
had so many lights flashing and up 
to 10 in-camera passes going on, we 
simply couldn't feed all the inhu¬ 
mation into the* available com¬ 
puter channels. So we actually had 
guys sitting around with switches 
to hit these light sources off and on 
at certain cue t>oints." 

The film's miniaturecrew.origi- 
nally to lx* he aded by Greg Jein. 
had undergone a < hange of com¬ 
mand somewhat similar to Dryer’s 
stepping in for Trumbull and 
Yurie ic h. Jein. who created theout- 
standing miniatures for CE3K and 
1941, was involved with Francis 
Coppola's ONE FROM THE 
11 FAR r when contacted in the fall 
of 1980. Jein thought he’d be*avail¬ 
able in a month or so. and recom¬ 
mended that Trumbull hire Mark 
Stetson—who had worked with 
Jein on Clint Eastwood's FIRF- 
FOX—to facilitate the start-up of 
(he* me xlei work. 

I lowever. by late October, it had 
become ap|xirent that Jein would 
lx* unable to shake his Zoetrope 
commitment in time toswitc hover 
to BLADE RUNNER, leaving 
Stetson in charge. 

At the age of 30, Stetson is one of 
the* most admired mcxlelmakers in 
Hollywood, with credits on S TAR 
TREK-TMP. CE3K: THE SPE¬ 
CIAL EDITION and ESCAPE 
FROM NEW YORK. Once Trum¬ 
bull and Yuricich gave the go- 
ahead. he immediately set up shop 
in FlEG’s Glencoe facility, originally 
leased by Columbia for CE3K. 


Stetson supervised a crew that 
numbered as many as 20. inc hiding 
Wayne Smith (miniature's coordi- 
nator). Tom Cranham (an illustra¬ 
tor who had worked with Trum¬ 
bull previously). Tom Pahk,Chris 
Ross, Bill George and Kristopher 
Gregg. Their responsibilities 
inc ludctl the aforementioned I lades 
Lmdscape, a detailed mcxlel of the* 
700-story Tyrell Pyramid, minia¬ 
ture versions of the* flying Police 
Spinner, and an assortment of tow¬ 
eling, retrofitted c itvscajxs. 

BI .ADF R UNNF R generated a 
lot of mcxlel work.” Stetson said. 
"We were budgeted at about 
$700,000 and we stayed with the* 
project, building miniatures and 
props, until August of 1981.1 don’t 
think it ’s unfair to say that they got 
their money’s worth." 

One of the* most challenging 
assignments was the two huge 
Tyrell Pyramids that tower over 
the* rest of the Hades landscape*. 
Actually only one 30"-high mcxlel 
was needed; optical sleight-of- 
hand created the illusion of an 
additional building. The general 
sha|x* was worked out with a rigid 
foam mock-up. Tom Cranham 
then drew out detailed plans for the 
textured surface of the pyramid; 
some of the details were executed in 
acid-etched brass plates, others 
were made into clear plastic wall 
panels, which were later painted. 
The 5 miniature pyramid, con¬ 


strue ic'd on an incredible 1:1000 
sc ale, also fea t ured me>veable eleva¬ 
tors on the outside* walls, for whic h 
laiei motion control photogiaphy 
created the illusion of independent 
movement (see photos page 32-33). 

The film o)x'tis with a fly-by of 
the* Hades Landsca|x* and Tyrell 
Pyramid, concluding with a pull- 
in shot focusing on the* office 
within the* pyramid where I lolden, 
Dec k.ini's ex-partner, is about to 
conduct a near-lethal interview 
with a renegade replicant (one of 
the* few incidents retained from 
Die k’s novel). To film thiselement, 
a large section of the top of the 
pyramid was built—I feet high. 5 
feet wick —inc hiding two tiny 
mcxlel office's actually built into 
the* miniature, with furnishings 
mate hed to the full-scale sets visible 
through the* windows. 

Perhaps the most complic ated of 
the film’s miniatures were the fly¬ 
ing Spinners, of which at least four 
models of varying si/es and capa- 
hililies were built: a 15"version was 
used for many of the distant fly-bys 
through the c ity; a 3Y' version was 
used to buz/ the* Precinc t Station; a 
tiny, one inc h model was placed on 
the* rcxif of the large scale* pyramid 
blow-up; and a four-foot mcxlel 
crammed with electronics and 
mec hanical controls—dubbed the 
“Hero Spinner"—used for most 
flying shots (see sidebar, page 11). 

In addition to the* Syd Mead-de- 


TYRELL’S DEATH was planned as a 
gut-wrenching effect, with a dummy 
head built by Marvin Westmore (shown 
below, with Rutger Hauer and Ridley 
Scott). But Scott wanted something 
less graphic, so he rigged actor Joe 
Turkel with thin tubes to make him 
“bleed” (right). Even this was deemed 
too strong, so Scott simply held the 
camera on Hauer and used sound 
effects to create the stunning impact. 























w We were so frantic to get more buildings 
into the cityscape that we grabbed Bill 
George's model of the “Millennium Falcon," 
bristled it with etched brass and plopped it 
into different shots. Instant building, py 



EFFECTS SUPERVISOR DAVID DRYER 


signed Spinner, Ridley Scott 
dec ided the environment needed 
other flying cars, and in a last-min¬ 
ute request, turned to Stetson's 
miniature crew to come up with 
something that looked good. 
“Three of these background vehi¬ 
cle’s were made, all hy Rill George, 
in a week and a half." noted Stet¬ 
son. "Sinc e there was nothing cru¬ 
cial about them, very little design 
work was clone. They were 18" long 
and we simply repainted them as 
needed." 

Ridleyville’s miniature city- 
scajM’s—used as a backdiop for 
sc enes of the Spinner flying, as well 
as certain establishing shots—be¬ 
gan with a series of designs hy 
Wayne Smith, who photographed 
existing I.os Angeles buildings 
that he thought might be interest¬ 
ing visually, yet simple to recon¬ 
struct in miniature. 

Aided by a series of renderings by 
production designer Lawrence 
Pauli and art director David 
Snyder, Smith began work, biting 
Jerry Allen to su|XTvisc a crew of 
six in the construction of a do/en 
large-scale buildings, some of 
which were eight feet tall. 

"When Ridley came down loser 
the first set-up we’d made of the 
miniature buildings," Dryer re¬ 
called, "he didn’t like it. Period. 

I le’d c hanged his inindon theover- 
all concept. Instead of the depths of 
the city, wltic It is what he already 
had on the New York Street set. 


Ridley wanted to go into mega- 
struc lures, huge buildings that had 
sup|x>sedly Ixrn erec ted on pre-ex¬ 
isting struc line’s. Ridley dec idedon 
this new direc tion after the city was 
c omplete, on the* stage, and set for a 
shot. We were really caught with 
out pants down. It was pretty 
depressing." 

Actually, one shot was com¬ 
pleted using the large* buildings, a 
sequence featuring a rear-pro¬ 
jected Syd Mead painting of the* 
metropolis that continued on into 
infinity. Rut for other aerial vistas, 
a whole new town was construe ted. 

"We had to move very fast," Stet¬ 
son said. "We literally grabbed any 
shape, large leftover, or hit of cylin- 
drical tubing we could gel out 
hands on. and turned it into a 
building." Com|xired to the fiist 
set of buildings, these miniatures 
were drastically reduced in si/e, hut 
vastly increased in scale. For exam¬ 
ple. what was supfxrsed to lx* a 
500-story building was, in reality, a 
miniature only four feet high. 
Thirty of these smaller struc lures 
were constructed, although some 
were merely pre-formed grid 
patterns backed with paper, with 
holes punc bed through for bac klit 
windows. 

To get enough huildingsquic kly 
enough, a number of other short¬ 
cuts were taken. Stetson arranged 
to borrow many of the small-scale 
skyscrapers built for ESCAPE 
FROM NEW YORK, and other 


modclmakcrs pitched in where 
they could. 

"Rill George had Ixrn making a 
five-foot tall replica of the Millen¬ 
nium Falcon for his own amuse¬ 
ment," Stetson said. "We were so 
frantic to get more buildings into 
the c ityscape that wegrablxd Rill's 
ship, bristled it with etched brass 
and plop|M‘d it into different shots. 
Instant building. The Millennium 
Falcon building is right next to the 
Prec inc t Station when the* Spinner 
glides down towards it. and it is in a 
couple of other, differently angled 
shots as well." 

Another recycled spaceship 
found its way into one of the* film's 
effects highlights, the* flight over 
the* Prc’c inc t Station. "The roof was 
biiiIt from a mold I had originally 
made for CE5K: THE SPECIAL 
EDITION," Stetson explained. "It 
was made for the* saucer-like ceil¬ 
ing of the ‘ballroom’ Neary stands 
in. the one that flies away towards 
the- top of the ship. We pushed a lot 
of fiber optics through that." The 
Prec inc t Tower stood double duty 
for other buildings as well, painted 
different colors and put into the 
hac kgtound of different shots. 

Another attraction of Ridley- 
ville was the strange, surreal blimp 
which floats over the* metropolis 
and bombards its inhabitants with 
all manner of arresting advertis¬ 
ing. Composed of a series of c onvo¬ 
luted innertube-like shapes, and 
detailed with antennas and peeling 


old hilllioatds (onto which new 
hilllioards have Ixrn built), the 
Rlimp went through four design 
revisions before Dryer and Scott 
approved its contours. 

"We wanted to get a doughy, 
inflated look, and went through a 
lot of ex|x*rimentation," Stetson 
said. "Eventually, we stretched a 
single al iuhlx’i sheet over a rac k of 
template’s and filled it with a whole 
hag of plaster to stretc h it out." 

Detailed with etched brass, the 
fom-foot long Rlimp was ahla/e 
with light, including two large 
commercial scrcrns. several smaller 
billboards and dozens of tiny run¬ 
ning lights, necessitating several 
motion-control passes. 

"That Rlimp took a long time to 
film." Dryer said, "we sometimes 
s|x’tu days just shooting Rlimp 
passes. I hc’ii we had to go in and 
optically add other things to it. 
Many of its axial lights were so 
dim, for inslance, that we had logo 
hack in to make them bright 
enough. We pullet! long ex|x>sures 
on that, up to 10 seconds |x*t 
frame." 

Flic* Rlimp is not the* only city 
artifac t to bombard the viewer with 
commercial messages; the* entire 
sides of buildings were also used to 
screen commercials. 

"One futuristic notion I am 
absolutely sure of. is that every¬ 
where you lcx>k you'll lx* assaulted 
by media," Ridles Scott explained. 
"A visual I y-appea ling offshoot of 
this concept was the* idea of gigan¬ 
tic advertising screens, something 
similar to the sc orelxraids you seeat 
most of the* major stadiums here 
(see top photo, page II)." 

Reprising his long career in TV 
commercials. Dryer directed more 
than a do/en s|x>ts, in lengths of 15 
to 15 seconds, photographed in 
55mm at EEG. "We shot a lot of 
haul se ll Oriental-looking com¬ 
mercials," Dryer said. "Then we 
tcxrk a silvet-painted, plastic mold 
form material (hat Icxiked like a 
series of tiny mihhy light bulbs, 
.ind projected our commercials 
onto that. We ac tually painted out 
some of these little* nubs to make it 
ap|x*ar as if some of the* bulbs had 
burned out." Fen screens were 
manufac lured, ranging from 8"x 10" 
to huge screens six feet high and 
four feet wide. 

“About six sc Teens were the most 
we used in any one shot,” Dryer 
explained. “Our commercials were 
all projected with a 55mm inter¬ 
lock projector. In some cases, like 
the fly-in over the* Prec inc t Station, 
the landsca|x‘s were so tight we 
couldn't fit the* projector in to 
throw the commercial where a 
screen was sup|x>sed to lx*. So we 
ended up bouncing the image’s 
with mirrors and (timing the film 
backwards in order to correc t the 
visual orientation. 

“Like the Rlimp," Dryer con¬ 
tinued. "it required many in-c^un- 
era passes to do the* advertising 
screens. We had to shoot effects 


Chief modelmaker Mark Stetson sets up a miniature cityscape on an EEG soundstage. The buildings shown here represent the 
variety of techniques and resources used on the project. For example, one of the original, large-scale miniatures built for the 
film is in the left foreground, while Stetson is working on a row of miniatures of greatly-diminished scale, originally built for 
ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK. The view beyond Stetson, showing buildings hundreds of stories tall, is a rear-projected Syd 
Mead painting. The film’s cityscapes were a hodge-podge of variously-scaled structures, rearranged for each particular shot. 



r x 

a 

i 








effects lighting for thedifferent ele- 
meni intensities, and then do eac h 
projec tion one frame at a time until 
we had 10 ot 12 jxisses in camera.” 

Such unusual assignments were 
common fot tlu* EEC» crew. Even 
what might appear on screen as a 
simple shot—such as interiors of 
the full-size Spinner with Harrison 
Foul and Kdward James Olmos— 
presented a number of complicated 
effects problems. 

“We were forced by a sc heduling 
problem to go in and shoot the 
mexk-up interiors with Fold and 
Olmos and then provide the hac k- 
gtound view’s fot what was going 
on outside the windows.” Dryer 
explained. “It would have hern 
much easier lot us to have shot 
those* using rear or front projec lion 
while* the ae tors were on stage.” 

Fo solve the* problem, the 
Spinner interiors were filmed with 
a 65mm camera, incorporating 
intcrac live lighting e*ffc*c ts coming 
through the windows and playing 
on Ford and Olmos. I lit* dash- 
board lights were also turned on. 
fun. interestingly, it was decided 
not toe hannel in video-imagery to 
the* monitors because the* cockpit 
was soconfined. Dryer simply lex k- 
ed-off the shots and matted in the 
imagery later. 

Flic* typical solution to combin¬ 
ing an interior with views of mov¬ 
ing citysca|x*s below would lx* a 
blue-screen composite—the tech¬ 
nique used in STAR WARS. Hut 
even with II.M’s state-of-the-art 


hardware, such shots are almost 
impossible to |x*rfect. “Blue screen 
—es|x*c ially whe n you're dc*aling 
with windshields oi other highly 
reflective surfaces—is almost iin- 
|M)ssihle to deal with because of the 
spill." Trumbull noted. "We used 
no blue sc recti at all.” 

Generally, Trumbull uses "con¬ 
trast mattes” to coni|x>site images, 
.i technique also known as “froni- 
light back-light.” To create a 
matte of a fly iiigSpinner. for exam¬ 
ple. the- motion-control move is 
repeated using lilac k and white 
film, with a brightly-lit white 
sc reen |x>sitioned behind the dark¬ 
ened model. 1 his silhouette creates 
an almost |x*rfect matte. 

However, for shots of tlu* Spin- 
net's interior . a somewhat simpler 
solution was devised. "We simph 
positioned a full-si/e Spinner 
w indshield on stage*, in front of a 
very large rear projec tion screen on 
which we ran the composite opti- 
cals of tlu- flight through the c ity. 
Flic* camera simply shot through 
the windshield. 

"For further verisimilitude, I 
tric*d to time the miniature scare h- 
lights on tlu* screen w ith the inter¬ 
active lighting we’d done during 
the live slicxit,” Dryer added. “We 
also used air-guns to splatter water 
on the windshield to suggest the* 
ever-present acid rain. We also 
added glycerine to the water to 
heavy it up. We'd done some time 
and motion studies to set* how fast 
water would crawl across the glass 
if the Spinner was going at 100 


MINIATURE CITYSCAPES were 
needed as a backdrop for shots of the 
Spinner in flight over and through the 
city. A team under the direction of 
Wayne Smith built a number of highly- 
detailed. large-scale buildings—1" to 
the foot—taking advantage of ready¬ 
made detailing used in the doll house 
trade. Above: Jerry Allen (I) and Suzy 
Schneider at work. However, after the 
buildings were completed and ready to 
film, director Ridley Scott altered the 
scope of the shots to include towering 
mega-structures. Almost overnight. 
Mark Stetson's miniature crew began 
turning out buildings that were short on 
detail, but vastly increased in scale. 
Ultimately, everything that was built 
was used, in an often kaleidoscopic 
blend of perspective and scale. Left Bill 
George stands next to the motion- 
control track in the EEG smoke room, 
adjusting a light prior to filming a fly¬ 
by. In the foreground is one of the 
original "doll-house" miniatures, but 
great scale is lent by the relatively- 
simple facade in the background, 
whose array of punched holes make it 
appear to be hundreds of stories tall. 

mph. .inti tlu* glycerine* hcl|x*d the 
illusion. All of this was later mat¬ 
ted in to tlu* live-action shot. 

Providing moisture on tlu* 
Spinner windshield wasn't the 
only water-based problem. Nearly 
every shot in thefilmhaseitherrain 
or smoke in it. or Ixxh—elements 
that have traditionally generated 
huge obstacles for effects techni¬ 
cians. Flu* traditional method of 
layering in rain—double expo¬ 
sure—usually results in an all tcx> 
obvious foreground “curtain” 
between the viewer and the ac tors. 

"Rolx it Hall and I worked out 
formulas fot double exposures and 


SHOOTING IN 65mm is one of 
the reasons EEG's special effects 
look so good. In many films, effects 
shots are easy to spot because of 
grain, color shift or other optical 
flaws. But it’s nearly impossible to 
tell the live-action from the effects in 
BLADE RUNNER, thanks in pari to 
the use of 65mm film for shooting 
and compositing effects sequences. 
(Films are occasionally released in 
70mm; the extra 5mm is for the 
sound track.) Generally, the larger 
the negative, the sharper the image 
and the clearer the final composite. 
As shown at right. 65mm gives a 
tremendous advantage over stan¬ 
dard 35mm and VistaVision (a pro¬ 
cess. used by ILM. that runs 35mm 
through the camera horizontally). 
Although a VistaVision frame is as 
tall as 65mm. one third of the height 
is cropped out when using a wide¬ 
screen (2.33:1) ratio. In contrast, 
none of the 65mm frame is wasted. 


cover mattes that bad never been 
clone before,” Dryer said proudly, 
“We had to photograph individual 
layers and drops at different distan¬ 
ces and s|x*cific angles for every 
rain shot in the film. Hall and I 
reasoned that the only way you (an 
see rain at night is if it's backlit. To 
get (his backlit effect, we'd do a 
partial composite of most of the 
elements in a scene—and with all 
the miniatures and mattes, there'd 
sometimes lx* .SO elements to a 
shot—and draw a low contrast 
black and white cover matte. 

“Then we'd lake that low con¬ 
trast print, hipac k it with a low 
contrast print of rain we'd shot 
against black, and inn it thtough 
the* optical printer. That would 
give the feeling that the* rain was 
only hac klit. so if there's an area in 
tlu* liackground that's lighter you 
could sex* rain in front of it. If it's a 
darker background, you wouldn't 
see as muc h rain. Almost every shot 
used this technique.” 

The black and white rain shots 
were filmed .it the* Burbank Studios 
in front of a darke ned building and 
in (he KEG parking lot. Rain 
mac bines stis|x*nded at a height of 
10 feet duiii|x*d the water for the 
camera. One layer of rain was shot 
at a time, although there was as 
many as four layers needed for a 
single* coni|x>sitc. Multiple double 
cxjxrsures were the* simple* solution 
to yet another layered effect. 

Flic* solution for miniature 
smoke sprang from a discarded 
ide*a for shooting rain. "We were 
thinking of projec ting water on lit¬ 
tle screens to get the* fe e ling of rain 
pattering clown in an alleyway as 
you passed it." Dryer said. “We 
never did that, but we endcxl up 
sluxxing smoke effects that way. 
We'd fix up a little 1" by 5" sc reen 
into an area within a miniature set, 
and make a pass to expose slow 
motion smoke on the card.” 

The final keys to BLADE RUN¬ 
NER'S effects work were the* matte 
paintings provided by Matthew 
Ytuicich (set* sidebar, page 17). a 


REGULAR 35mm 


VISTAVISION 


65mm (USED FOR BLADE RUNNER) 

i 


45 































long-time Trumbull associate. 
However, Yuricich found his usual 
approach to matte work had been 
relegated to the back seat. 

“I don't Icxik on the BIJVDE 
RUNNER mattes as real matte 
shots,” Yuricich said. "They'll 
probably cut my throat for saying 
that, hut I consider most of my 
paintings in (his film as an excuse 
for providing backgrounds for 
their flying toys. These mattes were 
necessary, granted, but not pri¬ 
mary. When I ordinarily do a 
matte, like those on STAR I REK 
or CE3K. it’s beta use* they have to 
Ik* there. But what I did on BLADE 
RUNNER was to really just layout 
a background for the effects work 
going on in front of it." 

Regardless, c ertain scenes would 
not have been nearly as effective 
without the contribution of Yuri- 
cich, who provided 20 full mattes 
"and a lot of partial ones" in his 
eight months on the project, 
including the view out of Tyrell’s 
offic e window (se*e* photos page 12). 
and a futuristic c itvsc ape surround¬ 
ing Sebastian's home (|xige .SO). 
Yuricich also beefed up dark areas 
of the screen during Batty's final 
confrontation with Dcckarcl and 
created multiplane haze andc louds 
over the Tyrell Pyramid. 

BLADE RUNNER was an 
unusual assignment," Yuricich 
said. ”1 don't think I’ve ever been 
invoked with any film that inc hides 
such a wealth of detailing." 


W LADE 
RUNNER'S live 
ac lion offic ially 
wiapped on the* 
last clay of June. 
But since the 
threatened Di¬ 
rector’s Guild 
strike never ma¬ 
terialized. Scott 
continued to 
shoot pick-up scenes until the 
second week of July. 

With the wrap came the usual 
flurry of post product ion activities. 
Scott found himself on a constant 
shuttle schedule between England 
and America sii|x*rvising the* edit¬ 
ing. clubbing, and postproduct inn 
optical effects. Van gel is, the Oscar- 
winning composer for CHARI¬ 
OTS OF EIRE was dubbed to pro¬ 
vide* the* hypnotic score. 

The publicity machine also 
began to gear up. In January*, the* 
first BLADE RUNNER trailer was 
released (prominently featuring 
The Ink Spots singing, "III Didn't 
Care"), and a lb-minute promo¬ 
tional film (featuring interviews 
with Scott, Eord and Mead) was 
circulated through the country’s 
various horror, fantasy and sc ience 
fic Non conventions. 

And then came the sneak pre¬ 
views. first in Denver and Dallas, 
and then in San Diego a few weeks 
later. The SRO crowds initially 


greeted the* newest Harrison Eord 
Ridley Scott opus with wild 
applause, but it soon became 
apparent that these viewers were 
Ford fans, primed for the stream¬ 
lined action heroics of RAIDERS 
<)I I HE LOST ARK and STAR 
WARS, and unprepared for the 
downbeat, uoirish aspects. 

Yet the less-than-enthusiastic 
response left Scott unworried. "A 
sneak preview is usually never the 
final print of a film. "Scott said. "It 
is a tough c ut. an assemblage used 
to gauge audience reac tion and to 
reorient tlu* filmmaker towards a 
populai |M*rception of his pioduc t. 
In this res|x*c 1.1 think the Denver 
Dallas sneaks served their purfxrsc*. 

"Besides," he continued. "I 
think that the only true audience 
problems concerned the climax of 
the film. We originally ended with 
what we felt was an ambiguous 
finale—European, if you will. The 
preview version c Iimaxed with an 
elevator door c losing on Rac bad's 
face, leaving the nature of her and 
I)c*c kard's plight unresolved. It was 
fairly apparent that the* crowds 
didn’t c are for this. Fortunately, we 
had also shot an alternative end¬ 
ing. with Deckard and Rachael 
leaving the city together in a 
Spinner, heading towards the 
un)M>lliitc*d Northwest. I should 
think that it will lx* better acc epted 
than our first choice." 

I lowever, the reaction to the new 
ending at the thin! preview, held in 


San Diego, was derided I y mixed. 
Some in the crowd felt that Decl¬ 
arers voice-over—explaining that 
Rachael is a new mcxlel replicant 
with no implanted termination 
date—was tcx> pat. ot worse, a dra¬ 
matic cop-out. 

Despite the varied res|x>nse to 
the new ending, response* to the 
preview was more enthusiastic. 
Then* were, lor example, no walk¬ 
outs fiom thesold-out auditorium. 
The expectant audience had in¬ 
cluded Michael Deeley. Joanna 
Cassidy, Alan I .add, Jr. and Ridley 
Scott, who remained in the theater 
lobby until every preview reaction 
card had been filled out and 
dc*|M}sited. 

The direc tor was in high spirits 
after the* screening, smiling andan- 
swering questions from the c rowd, 
stating. " Ehis has lx*en our best 
response yet." 

Although many in the crowd felt 
the lilm had a profound message. 
Ridley Scott, (oi one,did not agree*. 
"I must say that Em not comfort¬ 
able with these issues of morality," 
Scott confessed. "Making a film is. 
to some extent, like wielding a pro¬ 
paganda wea|x>n. Either you take 
the clear-cut position that you’re 
making a statement, or you enier- 
tain. In BLADE RUNNER. I 

would go so far as to say that the 
design is the* statement." 

When pressed on theethical ques¬ 
tions that the film raises. Scott 
shrugged them away. "Em not 
going to tap-dance around that 
question and lx* arc used of making 
a statement movie," he* said. 
"There is simply no intentional 
message in this film, although |x*o- 
ple will read all sorts of things 
into it. Basically. I see filmmak¬ 
ing as creating entertainment. II 
Em not in this business to enter¬ 
tain. what am I in this business for?" 

Whether or not Scott has suc¬ 
ceeded in entertaining the audi¬ 
ence won’t lx* known until June25. 
BLADE RUNNER’S national 
release date. But unfortunately and 
most sadly, the* man who had been 
primarily responsible for the film’s 
existence never saw the final print. 

On Marc h 2,1982, Philip kendred 
Die k died. The author had been 
recuperating from a stroke—and 
had been diagnosed as having every 
chance of recovering—when a 
second stroke and subsequent heart 
attack tcx>k his life. 

The immutable, alternating 
cycles of existence—of whit h Dick 
had so imaginatively written — 
played out their last ironic card: the 
premier cinematic adaptation of 
Dick’s work breathed its first 
breath with the author’s last. 
Regardless of BLADE RUNNER'S 
final merits, the* film will most cer- 
tainly expose a sizeable new audi¬ 
ence to the trail and genius of 
Philip K. Dick’s fiction. If fot no 
other reason than this, the strug¬ 
gle* to bring Do Androids D^eam 
Of Elec trie Sheep? to the screen 
will have been vinclicated. □ 




THE CHASE between Rick Deckard 
and Roy Batty concludes on the 
rooftops of Ridleyville. At this point. 

Harrison Ford is beaten, broken— 
literally—and desperate to evade the 
swifter, stronger replicant by climbing 
up over the comice of the Bradbury 
Building (right, reconstructed on the 
studio backlot). Ultimately. Rutger 
Hauer lets the "blade-runner" live, even 
as his own, artificial life drains away. 
During the final moments of the chase. 
Hauer clutches a white bird (below), 
which was supposed to fly away as 
Batty dies. However, the bird was 
bothered by the on-set rain effects and 
Scott eventually had to splice in an 
insert shot of it flying up into a clear, 
blue, daylight sky—a jarring anomaly. 














including rain, mist, a commercial” 
on a building screen, and interactive 
street lighting. 

Yuricich's high-quality work is all 
the more remarkable considering he 
must paint in a narrow band of colors 
which barely resemble the original 
shot. That's because his mattes are 
photographed not with the film stock 
used for live-action photography, but 
with a special high-contrast fine- 
grain duplicating stock used to strike 
release prints. 

The thousands of prints needed for 
BLADE RUNNER are made from a 
dupe negative, rather than the 
original, irreplaceable camera 
negative. First, a low-contrast print 
(called the interpositive or IP) is 
made from the original negative. The 
IP is used to create the dupe, which 
in turn creates release prints. 

These intermediate steps diminish 
the quality of the final print, but 
prevent damage to original negative. 
Most of the time, the system works 
adequately. But effects films require 
so many additional steps between 


original negative and release print 
that grain becomes a problems. 

So Yuricich's mattes are photo¬ 
graphed directly on the high- 
contrast dupe stock, eliminating at 
least two generations of film. But it 
means he must match the nearly- 
monochromatic colors of the IP. 

"This is a system that my brother. 
Richard, devised for CE3K and STAR 
TREK,” Yuricich explained “It's 
good, but there are problems. All the 
colors shift In fact, I can't get black 
very well, and the film is so slow that 
whites become black It's tricky.” 

"On dupe stock, medium gray is 
equivalent to white, dark-grey is 
black, and a narrow zone of green 
actually represents blue and yellow." 
explained Doug Trumbull "Matt has 
to painstakingly compensate for that 
complexity. No one else in the 
industry does that." 

This technique makes a Yuricich 
matte look nearly as optically sharp 
as a non-effects shot, and makes it 
difficult to tell where the painting 
ends and the set begins. 


The Mattes of Matt Yuricich 

He created a towering megalopolis 
with a few low-contrast brush strokes. 


To retrofit a store front, you need a 
set decorator. To retrofit a building, 
you need a miniature crew. But to 
create an entire retrofitted city, with 
buildings towering hundreds of 
stories tall, you need a skilled matte 
painter like Matthew Yuricich, who 
has previously created the night 
skies of Muncie. Indiana for CE3K, 
and Star Fleet Headquarters for 
STAR TREK—TMP 

For BLADE RUNNER. Yuricich 
was primarily relied upon to create 
the heights of a near-future Los 
Angeles, a job that included supply¬ 
ing the backdrop to the final chase 
between Deckard and Batty (shown 
above, below left). 

For the shot of Harrison Ford 
sneaking along a ledge (above), the 
cornice of the Bradbury Building was 
reconstructed on the studio backlot. 
Flexible mirrors were placed beneath 


Harrison Ford teeters 
over the misty streets of 
Ridleyville (above), a 
combination of matte 
painting, limited set 
(inset), and optically- 
added rain and mist. 


large neon letters (representing the 
other side of the street) to create the 
proper reflections. As with other 
BLADE RUNNER effects shots, the 
scene was filmed in 65mm 

Working from a print of the live 
action, Syd Mead then painted at 
least two different versions of the 
scene as a guide for Yuricich. one 
was brightly-lit and intricately 
detailed; the other, very similar to the 
final matte, was dark and indistinct. 

In addition to the painting and live 
action photography, other elements 
were added to the final composite. 


A matte shot of 
Ford dangling in 
mid-air (below) 
required a 
traveling matte, 
so a large white 
sheet of styro¬ 
foam was placed 
beneath his feet 
(below right). 
Left: Matthew 
Yuricich at work 
on a cityscape. 




















TATOOINE DESERT WARFARE 
involves the destruction ot a giant sand 
vessel (bottom), a massive 80 foot high. 
212 foot long set constructed and filmed 
in the deserts of Arizona. The attack on 
the giant war machine is mounted by 
Luke Skywalker. Han Solo. Princess 
Leia. Lando Calrissian, and Chewbacca 
who are shown (inset) making their 
»«raoe aboard one of its satellite skiffs. 


OF THE 


Artwork by Ralph McQuarrie 






























REVENGE OF Tl IE JEI)I, George 
Lucas' sixth chapter in his STAR 
WARS saga, and the third to be* 
hlinrd. completed print ipal photog¬ 
raphy in April on location near 
Yuma. Arizona. The $32.5 million 
Lucasfilm prod union is scheduled 
lor release May 27. 1983 through dis¬ 
tributor 20th Century-Fox. 

While Lucas managed to keep a 
low-profile* on the production dur¬ 
ing two months of stage photog¬ 
raphy in London, filming on the 
hn|M*rial sand dunes in Buttercup 
Valley, 18 miles west of Yuma, 
attracted some unwanted media 


attention for the construction of a 
huge sand vessel (shown left), de¬ 
stroyed in a pyrotec hnics-laden battle 
scene. The Arizona filming became 
the stibjec t of an A I* wire service news 
story, and San Diego's KFMB-TV dis¬ 
patched a newscopter to film the set 
during construc tion. 

Crowds of STAR WARS fans, 
feared by the production, never mate¬ 
rialized. and filming on the* $1 mil¬ 
lion set c ame off without a hitc h. The 
anti-gravity sand barge is flown by 
Jahha the* I lull, an alien underworld 
profiteer who put a price on Han 
Solo’s head in STAR WARS. Carst for 



the Arizona filming was $1 million. 

REVENGE OF THE JED1 is 
direc ted by Richard Marcjuand. who 
helmed an absolutely dreadful horror 
film called THE LEGACY in 1979. 
Marcjuand got the Lucasfilm assign¬ 
ment on the strength of his work in 
EYE OF THE NEEDLE, an elabo¬ 
rate Nazi spy t hriIler starring Donald 
Sutherland, filmed m 1981. 

Paving the way for REVENGE OF 
I HE JEDI, distributor 20th Centu¬ 
ry-Fox plans to re-release THE 
EMPIRE SI RIKES BACK in Decem¬ 
ber. and in April 1983, with a promo 
tag for the ujm ottiing sequel. □ 


SEARCHING FOR SOLO, droids 
C-3PO and R2D2 are intercepted in 
the entrance hall to Jabba the Huffs 
desert palace on Tatooine. by Jabba's 
sinister major domo Bib Forluna. 
Remember. Han Solo got freeze dried 
at the end of the last film, and his body 
was taken to Jabba by Boba Fett. 


HIGH PRIEST OF STAR WARS. 

Ralph McQuarrie, whose art. shaped by 
the imagination of George Lucas, 
provides the visual design of the STAR 
WARS saga, an eclectic biend of science 
fiction and adventure film traditions. 



i 


. 


49 



















V* i \ 








Plus: The story behind the 
amazing special effects created 
by Industrial Light & Magic. 


From a fairly obscure televi¬ 
sion series in the late 60s, STAR 
TREK grew into something that 
fnfills the criteria for mythology: 
endurance. From the cancella¬ 
tion of the TV show in 1969 to the 
appearance of the first movie in 
1979, there was almost no input 
from the creators of the show. Yet 
the STAR TREK universe lived 
on in the hearts and minds of its 
fans. 

When originally televised in 
1966-1969, the series barely 
squeaked into its third season, 
and then died of low ratings. 
Nevertheless, kids, teenagers, 
and college students revered the 
show and kept it alive in sv ndica- 
lion after its network demise, 
s I AR IRIK is <>ii< <>1 [Ik feu 
syndicated shows that hasthedis- 
tinction of always being on the 
air somewhere in the country 21 
hours a day. In fact, it would lx- 
hard tofinda person in thiscoun- 
ti \. or half the world, who would 
not recognize the shape of the 
Enterprise or lx* able to place a 

Ricardo Montalban as Khan (inset), 
recreating a memorable role from the 
television show's first season. STAR 
TREK II melds the best qualities of the 
TV show to the high-tech visual splendor 
of special effects by ILM. Space Lab 
Regula One. a model ILM reconverted 
from the first feature, orbits barren 
world Gamma Regula. 


reference to Sjxx k’s pointed ears 
and the famous line. “Beam me 
up. Mr. Scott.” 

A lot of very profound words 
have been written in an attempt 
to explain the S I AR I REK phe¬ 
nomenon. Doc toral degrees have 
been earned for dissertations on 
the subject. Learned pajxTS have 
appeared in journals of psychol¬ 
ogy, sc k iologv. history . and even 
religion. 

It may be that in the long run, 
science fiction films in general, 
and SI AR I REK in particular, 
will be as charac teristic of our 
time as the wise-cracking sophis¬ 
ticated comedies of the‘30s or the 
hard-boiled detective stories of 
the 10s. Indeed, with their galac¬ 
tic empires and fantastic lechnol- 
ogy. space films might be the 
most popular films of all lime. 
They show us that man has a 
future, when all around us we 
hear the warnings that civiliza¬ 
tion has reached its zenith and is 
on a long downhill slide. Every- 
time we read in our newspapers 


about another bomb, another 
war or another pollutant, space 
movies take on greater imjxjr- 
tance as a sign that man can 
endure and prevail. 

The optimistic humanism of 
STAR TREK is refreshing in a 
world buried in sophisticated 
cynicism. The show was one of 
the first science fiction produc¬ 
tions, and certainly the first TV 
series, which was nonxenopho- 
bic. Non-human aliens were not 
automatical!) villains, nor cute 
comic relief. From the* moment 
early in the fiist episode (“Man 
Trap”), when we saw the man 
with the elegantly pointed ears 
on the bridge and in command of 
the ship, not lurching around 
menacing the heroes, it was 
obvious that here was something 
special. 

It is true that the series charac¬ 
ters were simple, almost arche¬ 
types, and that the stories were 
thinly disguised allegories for 
present day problems. But it was 
also true that an elusive quality 


of the charac ters gave the moral¬ 
ity plays an extra dimension. 
Whether or not this hint of some¬ 
thing beyond the obvious was 
manifested in the actors or just in 
the minds of the v iewers, it fired 
the imagination of thousands of 
people in the audience and pro¬ 
duced an ever-grownng STAR 
TREK fandom. Conventions 
appeared and a thriv ing amateur 
press turned out reams of fan- 
written spin-off fiction utilizing 
the series characters and universe 
for new stories. 

Gradually. Paramount (which 
seems to own the lion's share of 
the rights to the TV show) began 
to realize the enormous demand 
for merchandising on the series 
even though it long ceased to be¬ 
an on-going production. The 
success of commissioned novels, 
books of artwork and blueprints 
of the ship—and the continuing 
popularity of the STAR TREK 
conventions and the syndicated 
reruns—led Paramount to think 
of reviving what was beginning 
to Icxik like a golden goose. 

I bis gcxise was, at various 
times, to be brought forth as a 
movie-for-TV, a s|x*cial event 
program for cable, anda series for 
a proposed, but never realized, 
“fourth network" for television. 
Finally, it was decided to make 
the goose fly as a motion picture. 


Article by Kay Anderson 


51 





Cast and Credits 


% LlNh ( nilun'hn Piilum irlruM, b Kl. li t 
mint. In Cailm. S«m|m uml Ik*! In xlrrm. Ihrrrtrd 
by Nit hulas Mnrt. Produced by Kulnl Sallin. 
Screenplay M |4ik SohmiK Story by |{jt\r Ben- 
mil ami |ji k Sn** arils. Hasrdtm Star Irrk nratrd 
by C.rnr KiMlrimhrrrv hxrrutnrftrttdutrr. Iljnr 
Krtinrii. t innnatngraphrr. C.asnr RrsUirr. Prib 
dm turn drugttrr. Jtisrph K. Jmiiings tditrd by 
William P. Doruish. Muut nnnpttxrd by James 
llnntn. t.xcrulnr tnruullant, l .me K<mI«I«ii 
l**ir\ Sftrtial ruual rffrtL* punimniat Imiusinal 
I n>hi 1* Mat(i<. % diiKHm nl l.uuifilm, I.kL V/rr- 
rial ritual rflrrtt tufreretturt. Jim Vrillrut anil 
Rru Ralston iwiMUttrfnndinri. W ilium I. Pliil- 
li|*s. Cnxturnr drxignrr. Rol*rtt Hrli lirr. Art dim - 
Inr. Miiharl Minor. Sri drtmalor. ( harlrs M. 
C.raifn*. Makeup arlttlt. Wrtnrt Rrpplrt. James 
L. Mi( m. Sftrtial rffrt t* \uftm uor. RnhDanson. 
Prnfrerty matter, Jar l .oni(o. Set drtignrrt, Daniel 
(.link. Daniel I Maltese. I idrtt t tHtrdmatnr. 
loilil C.iorinnk Stunt rmtrdinalor, Rill ( ouih. 
Sprnal utund rffrtl% by. Alan llimarlh. Title 
drugn h\ Him Rtaike A- K'Mli>rt Jolmvm. tddr 
Ittmal tttmpulrr grafthu * fumixhrd fry I m limits 
National I altorjtoi v Additionaloptualrffrrtt by 
Mmlerii Film Fffn tv I hrtnr from Star / trktrlni- 
turn xrrirx by Alrsanrirr l <Mnat;e. 

Admiral James T. Rirk . . William Shainrt 

S|mh k . Ixonard \imm 

Dr. I ronard Mil m .Deloirsl Rrlli \ 

I ni'inrn Munticomers Si oil . . . James lliMthan 

Chrkm.Walirt Roeing 

Sulu. (•ntri'r I akn 

I lima.Nirhrllr Nir hols 

Dr. C arol Mart us.Riln Him Ii 

Datid Marius .Mrrrill Ruliiik 

l aptainC lark Trrrrll.Paul Winiield 

l l.Saasik.Rirstie kilo 

Rhan Rirardo Monialkan 

Midshipman Prirr Prrslon ... Ikr I ism man n 

JiMthim. Judson S«oii 

Jrdda. John Vargas 

Rslr.John W inston 

Braih.Paul Rrnl 

(adrl.XitholasC.ursl 

Madison.Kussrll I akaki 

Marrh. Rrsin Sul I is an 

Cars* Chief. Jim- 1 Waist an 

Star Feel Cadets Rill Rakn. Brian Das is. 

Krr Rai. Rim Rsusaki. Sergio \ alrniino 


Lnfortunately. the goosr laid an 
egg. 

STAR I REK— I UK MOTION 
PlCI’t ’RE was not hi lit; like* STAR 
I REK—ilu* IV serit-s. Ii was as il 
the powers dial lx* decided to 
remake-S EAR I REK In violating 
every princ ipal the series’ |x>j>ular- 
itv w as based on. Com bed-in 
subdued, generally unpleasant 
hints of their former |x*rsonalities. 
the characters wandered through 
an aimless and irritating plot 
w hit h sinned pi imarily an ext use 
foi a self-conscious sjx-cial effects 
exttavagan/a. The plot was un- 
alrashedly tit awn from several epi- 
stnles ol the series, notably ‘‘ The 
Changeling." anti tIn* climatic 
"revelation" was ex|x>unded with 
sut h numbing heavy-hantledness 
that even the most dedicated I it-k- 
kie must havesiippicNsedashtitltlti 
before jumping up to praise the 
Em|x*ror’s new t lollies. 

I he movie cost $-15 million "that 
Pat amount will admit to” accord- 
ing to film industry figures. Rut 
like the EY show, extensive mer¬ 
chandising saved tlit* first movie. 
I lie myriad pnxlutts created in 
conjunction with the movie sold 
very well. And when the movie 
finally earned bat k its nut—a film 
must gross about three times its 
piodut tioti costs tostart showing a 
pt of it — it was plain that even 
severe maltreatment had not killed 
the golden gtxrse. 



PROJECT GENESIS 

"At the story conference 
the next day, executive 
producer Harve Bennett 
came over, hugged me, 
and said' You saved 
STAR TREK!"' 

Michael Minor, 
art director 

Paramount Ix-gan to think once 
more about bringing out the sets it 
had carefully stoit-tl away alter the 
lirst film wtapped. This time 
things would lx* done differently, 
they tlet ided sensibly enough. Eliis 
time the television arm ol Para¬ 
mount would puxluce the motion 
pit tint-. Eliis time itshudget would 
lx- strictly controlled and kept to 
about a quarter of (lit* final tost ol 
the- first film. I bis time it would lx- 
S EAR ERE K as it had been in the 
much-loved TV series: .1 story 
about jxople. not technology 01 
sjx*t ial effei ts. 

(.me Rtxldenberry. creator anti 
exet ulive piodut ci of theseriesand 
pit xlu ter ol (lit- fiist mm it- lx t aim- 
"exet ulive consultant" and I larve 
Bennett wasc hose 11 to serveasexei - 
utive ptfxluter. Ben net I has Ix-en 
resjxued lot his intelligence*, his 
ailit ulateness, and his fund of gen- 
eral knowledge since the days 
when, as I larvey Fischman, he w as 


one of tht- original nidio show 
“Quiz Kitls"’ in the ’ 10s. Suite-then 
he has worked foi the Sun I lines 111 
Chicago. CBS- rV. ABC SIX (where 
lit- w as exec ulive puxluc et lot THE 
SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN) 
and as an executive prcxlucer wri¬ 
ter for Lniversal. Bennett was exec¬ 
utive prcxluc ei ol the RI( ,\ I MAN. 
POOR MAN and I ROM HERE 
EO E EERNI 1 \ mini-series. 

With the st 1 ipt loi S EAR I REK 
II still to lx- settled u|x}ii. Bennett 
Ix-gan gathering his pitxluttion 
staff. Bennett selected Rolx-it Sal- 
lin. a tlirec tot and pitxlucer of tele- 
\ ision t ommerc ials and an old t ol- 
lege chum, to prtxlucc* tht- movie. 
Bennett ami Salim both attended 
LCLA’s Film Sthtx»l "in the earls 
lilties." joketl Sallin. "Ix-loie it was 
fashionablt.” Sallin has made over 
1 f>00 commeicials and won \ ii tri¬ 
al 1\ every toji national anti interna¬ 
tional awaitl. including the 1078 
(iliofor Most I lumoiousCommet- 
t ial ol the Yeat and tht- l970Grantl 
Pi ix ol the Yeiiitc* Film Festival foi 
outstanding commercial world¬ 
wide. It It-ll upon Sallin. who 
joined the- pitxluttion in February 
1081. to bring-in S EAR I REK II 
quickly and cheaply. Ehe film’s 
budget is off ic ially $12 million. 

Bennett also hired Michael 
Minor as ait director and it was 
Minor w ho suggested the direc tion 
tilt- st 1 ipt would eventually late. At 
that time the story was called THE 


52 



























































■CrVf V 



OMEGA Pk( >JEGI and it revolved 
around a destine live weapon. 

ve wanted something up¬ 
lifting. something that would lx*as 
fundamental in the 23rd Century as 
the discovery of recombinant DNA 
is in out time," said Minot who 
suggested an idea to Bennett dur¬ 
ing a casual phone call. "Then 
something just came to me, and I 
said ‘Terraforming.’ Ham* asked. 
‘What's that?' and I told him it was 
the altering of existing planets to 
conditions which are compatible 
to human life. 

‘‘I suggested a plot, just making 
it up in my head while talking on 
the phone." Minor continued. 
‘‘ The Federation had dcvclo|x*d a 
way of engineering the planetary 
evolution of a lxxl\ in s|kicc* on 
such a rapid scale* that instead of 
eons you have events taking place 
in monthsor years. You pic kadead 
world or an inhospitable gas 
planet, and you c hange its genetic 
matrix 01 code, thereby speeding 
up time. I bis, of course*, is also a 
terrible weapon. Suppose you 
trained it on a planet filled with 
|M*ople and sjMeded up its evolu¬ 
tion. You could destios the planet 
and every I deform on it. ’Hie Feder¬ 
ation is involved with playing 
God. but at the same time*, trying to 
take barren dead planets and con¬ 
vert them into lovely worlds. I lam* 
liked the idea a lot. At the* story 
conference the next clay, he came 


over. huggc*d me, and said ‘You 
saved STAR TRF.k!*" 

This terraforming device was 
aptly named the* Genesis Project 
and the story rapidly took sha|x* writ¬ 
ten by Bennett and Jac k Howards. 
Care was taken to keep the* inter¬ 
play and relationships between 
characters that mat keel the fits! 
set iesac c urate and true. I jttle line k- 
grounc! details have l>een pre¬ 
served, like kiik’s interest in fus¬ 
ion and his obsessive (xission lot 
his ship. 

"It was my idea lot kuk to have 
nautical souvenirs in his apart¬ 
ment and his c | uai lets.' Sal 1 1 n said. 

I went over to the pi op house* and 
pic ked out a ton of stuff. There's a 
diver's helmet, a model of a square- 
rigger sailing vessel, all sorts of 
things." 

Othei threads of personality, 
going bac k to the* TV seiies. weave 
through the script, the heavy of 
the* story comes from one of the* first 
season episodes, khan, the genetic- 
engineered tyrant who ruled a 
quarter ol oiu planet in thee losing 
years of 20th century, was first 
encountered in ‘‘Space Seed" (see 
sidebar page* 75). In that episode, 
the Enterprise came* upon him and 
Ids followers, in sus|M'iid(*d anima¬ 
tion. drifting along in deep space 
in the aptly -named ship the Botany 
Bay. 

In other ways than the re-en¬ 
counter with his edd nemesis. 


STORYBOARDS were the first step 
in getting STAR TREK II on the screen. 
As the script was being written by Jack 
B. Sowards. art director Michael Minor 
was hired in June 1981. and began 
story boarding the effects under the 
direction of producer Robert Sallin. 

With a background in the production of 
television commercials. Sallin under¬ 
stood that extensive preplanning of the 
film’s special effects was the only way to 
budget it accurately, and bring it in 
economically. The storyboards shown 
(left), were drawn by Minor in October, 
after the effects contract on the film 
had been awarded to Industrial Light 
and Magic (ILM). a division of Lucas- 
film. From top to bottom, left to right: 1) 
Scene 14. Chekov and Terrell material¬ 
ize on Ceti Alpha V; a non-ILM effect 
supplied by Peter Kuran s Visual 
Concepts Engineering company. 2) 
Scene 46. Regula One orbits Gamma 
Regula; 3) Scene 60. Kirk. Spock. and 
Bones view the Genesis Tape: 4) Scene 
76. the Reliant fires phaser at the 
Enterprise; 5) Scene 76A. reverse on 
Enterprise as Reliant's phaser hits; 6) 
Scene 92. angle past Enterprise as 
Reliant comes about; 7) Scene 165. on 
Enterprise bridge, camera pans to view 
screen; 8) Scene 195. Reliant bearing on 
collision course with Enterprise, elec¬ 
trical charges building; 9) Scene 196. 
angle on Reliant twin phaser cannon 
firing, during nebula battle. Charted 
with each drawing is a complete 
breakdown of the elements needed to 
complete the shot, divided into ILM and 
non-ILM work. Said Minor of ILM s 
contribution to the film. “Its been very 
exciting for me to see the effects I 
visualized done on the screen by the 
Rolls Royce of effects houses. The 
visuals in STAR TREK II are better than 
the first in so many ways.'* 

kli.m. tlu* past is (uu lung up with 
kiik. I hc script realizes ih.it these 
people are no longer the same peo- 
ple we met in the series, 15 years 
ago. I hey ‘ve grown older. They're 
surrounded hv a bevy ol cadets who 
make them feel their age. kirk, in 
particular, is feeling the cold 
breath of mortality on the hack of 
his neck, lie has just turned 
another year older as the* story 
lx*gins. and is beginning to realize 
that he has not lx*en exactly build¬ 
ing a nest, emotionally, during his 
life. 



Producer Robert Sallin. 


“Throughout the story, kirk 
goes through a great deal ol intro- 
s|x*( lion and rcflec lion on his life," 
Sallin said. "In a sense, lie's having 
a mid-life crisis. Throughout the* 
film we cx|x>sed and phimlred the 
inlet|M*isonal relationships, which 
were established hac k on the series, 
to a level I don't think you've seen 
liefore." 

In the* script, kiik meets his son, 
someone he was never panic ularly 
interested in becoming involved 
with, and he doesn’t even recognize 
him. David kirk is not a little Imy. 
not a ten lager, hut a grown man. a 
scientist on an advanced project, 
indicating years of education and 
c*x|x*rience behind him. "I stayed 
away because you asked me to," 
kiik tellshisson'smother.biitstay¬ 
ing away and staying totally out of 
tone h are two different tilings, and 
they* both know it. kit k has always 
worked hard at Ireing emotionally 
superficial, and it has come home 
to haunt him in many ways. 

As tlu* sc ript develo|x*d, Sallin 
began preproduction and was 
determined not to let the film’s s|x- 
c ial effec ts get out ol hand, a fac tor 
whic h drove up the budget on the 
first film. 

“I just applied some old com¬ 
mercial production techniques," 
said Sallin. "I storvboarded every¬ 
thing. I had a c hart made which 


Art director Michael Minor and production designer Joseph Jennings, two STAR 
TREK fans who made sure the design of the film was faithful to the TV series. 












































I i su*d. by scene, every s|x“t ial effect 
and optical effect, and I timed each 
one. I designed and supervised all 
the s|M*t ial effects. Mike Minor, our 
art director, sat up here in my office 
and did the storyboards. Then I 
held meetings with four or five 
optical effects companies, and 
some of those meetings ran over 
three hours. 

*‘I gave them thorough informa¬ 
tion. str that when the movie was 
finished, the amount of deviation 
from the plan was very slight."’con¬ 
tinued Sallin. “As you recall, in the 
first movie there were quite a few 
problems with s|x*e ial effects. 1 his 
time we came in so close to budget 
that you couldn’t go out for a 
decent luiu h on the difference.** 

The storyboarding prtx ess began 
in June, before the script bad been 
finalized. As different scripts came 
in. art director Mike Minor redrew 
the IxKirds. “I laid out four different 
features in storvlxxird.” said Minot. 
“laterally different. Different plots, 
different characters, different events, 
different effects. I put in maybe 100 
man-hours before we settled on 
what we used to gel bids for the 
effects.’* 

ILM EFFECTS 

“I hate the Enterprise 
model. I think it s made 
out of lead. It took eight 
guys to mount it for a 
shot and a forklift to 
move it around. ” 

Ken Ralston, 
effects co-supervisor 

The winning bidder was ILM. 
George I.ucas* Industrial Light 
and Magic fac ility near San Fran¬ 
cisco, and producer Robert Sallin 
credits their “integrity and honesty’* 
as well as all the preplanning for 
biinging-in STAR LRKK II on- 
schedule and 011 -budget. Douglas 
Trumbull’s Entertainment Effects 
Group (EEG) was one of the losing 
bidders. According to Trumbull. 


KIRK’S APARTMENT in San Fran¬ 
cisco is the setting lor a personal call by 
Dr. McCoy. (DeForest Kelley) early In 
the film. In which he suggests that Kirk 
regain what he really misses in his life: 
a starship command. The story, by 
executive producer Harve Bennett, 
depicts Kirk as an aging hero plagued 
by self-doubt. Appropriately. McCoy s 
visit is prompted by Kirk's birthday. 
Shown right. Kirk (William Shatner) 
uses McCoy s gift, a pair of antique Ben 
Franklin half-glasses, to examine a 
bottle of rare bootleg Romulan ale 
McCoy brought for the occasion. 
Production designer Joseph Jennings 
dressed Kirk's apartment with antiques, 
to emphasize the character's fascina¬ 
tion with history, and producer Robert 
Sallin added a touch of nautical props 
to suggest that Kirk perceives himself 
as the space-age equivalent of history's 
great sea voyagers. The view of San 
Francisco seen outside Kirk's picture 
window was provided, economically 
enough, by art director Michael Minor, 
who rented a small section of a scenic 
painting of the city from 20th Century- 
Fox. used originally in THE TOWER¬ 
ING INFERNO. Minor added a subtle, 
realistic touch by constructing, between 
the painting and the window, lighted 
miniature buildings, with moving ele¬ 
vators. seen fleetingly from various 
angles, such as Kirk and McCoy in 
front of a roaring fireplace (bottom 
right). Wardrobe designer Robert 
Fletcher provided costumes to bring 
out the personalities of the characters: 
McCoy wears a shirt and trousers with 
flaps and pockets and inset panels of 
color to suggest someone who dresses 
in a more youthful fashion than most 
men his age: Kirk's outfit suggests a 
man with an ego. who likes flashy 
clothes, but in an elegant way. 

as reported in the* June issue* of 
American Film magazine'. “EEG’s 
bid was SI .5 million under ILM V’ 
Sallin refused to eliscuss the* 
effects budget, or the- bid diffc're'ii- 
tial alleged by Trumbull, saying. 
“I don’t think it's appropriate toclo 
so. or anyone’s business for that 
matter.” Sallin chalks up Trum¬ 
bull's remark to "sour grapes. EEC. 
was excluded fairly e*arl\ in the bid 
process for a very simple reason,* 
Sallin said. “Trumbull made it very 
clear that lie* would not be available 
afte*r a certain dale, because he was 
going to dircc t BRAINS 1 ()RM. 


Work began at ILM in early Sep¬ 
tember. well before t he start of prin¬ 
cipal photography, using the* 
mode l of the* Enterprise left ovei 
from tlu* first feature*. Because of 
the* model’s complexity. ILM 
requested advice from 1 rumbull, 
who had filmed it for STAR 
•TREK—TI1E MOTION IMC- 
IV RE. Though ILM offered to 
pay all expenses, T rumbull refuse'll 
to send any EEG technicians to 
ILM’s San Rafel facility. Master¬ 
ing the' Enterprise'—and master it 
they' diet—caused ILM no small 
amount of time and trouble. 

One of the most successfuleffects 
suppliers in the business. ILM uie's 
hard not to look like* a film studio. 
Soundstages there don’t look like 
soundstages and there are n< > fences, 
gate's, guards, or badge's. The build¬ 
ings have no signs |x*rtaining to 
ILM. parent company Lucasfilm. 
or special effects moviemaking. 
Only whe n you ge t dee|x*i into the 
non-public areas inside* the* build¬ 
ings do c Ini's appear: large* (tamed 
|x>sters of STAR WARS in Frene h. 
Italian. Japanese. German; a 
photo of C-3P0 carrying a bag 
of grexeries down a Los Angeles 
Street; a hand-let let eel notice 
asking for a camera to lx* return- 
eel “to the* monster shop.’’ 

Sitting at a big oak table in the 
conference toom at ILM. Ken Ral¬ 
ston lookc*d ruefully at a photo of 
the mcxlel of the* TSS Enterprise. 


The mcxle l is huge, over six feet 
long, and it’s covered with a cus¬ 
tom-made white shroud bearing 
the* Star Fieri arrowhead. 

“I hate that model.” Ralston 
said, not without soinefondness. “I 
think it’s made out of lead. I don’t 
know what’s inside to make it so 
heavy; it took e ight guys to mount 
it for a shot and a forklift to move it 
around.” 

Ralston. 28 years old. tc'amed up 
with Jim Wille'iix tosu|X'rvisc* the 
visual e'ffe'c is ILM did for SIAR 
TREK II. Like many people in the 
effec ts end of the businc*ss. Ralston 
was a kid who was fasc inated with 
science fic lion and monster movies. 
It was Ray Harry’hausen’s stop 
motion work that first got him 
interested. Ralston worked several 
years in television commercials 
and was frer-lanc ing whe n an old 
friend. Dennis Muren. asked him 
to come to work on a movie called 
STAR WARS. Ralston has hern 
with Lucasfilm ever since. 

Working with the big model of 
the' Enterprise causc'd many head- 
ae he*s for Ralston and his crew. For 
the first movie the* Ente rprise was 
give'll a siqx'i deluxe paint job 
which was extremely glossy. The 
idea was that as you moved the ship 
around, it would cast off iridescent 
shades of color, like* an abalone 
shell. In the movie, though, it 
doc'sn’t ejuite* work that way. Ral¬ 
ston decided to dull the finish 


Unaware he is Kirk s son, David Marcus (Merritt Butrick) warns his mother. 
Dr. Carol Marcus (Bibi Besch). that Star Fleet will misuse Project Genesis. 













down and .idil .1 link* extra detail¬ 
ing to the surface. 

“The ship won't look any differ¬ 
ent oil the screen." he said. “The 
iridescence effect still works, hut 
having a little relief on the surface 
made things easier on us. We didn’t 
have tohorsearound with the light¬ 
ing to get rid of the gloss." 

Ralston used the traditional 
blue-screen method to matte the 
ships in with the* hac kgrounds. 
Objects are photographed against 
a hac kground of .1 panic nl.ir shade* 
of intense* blue, using .1 type* of film 
which does not register that color. 
Anything of that shade of blue does 
not appear on the film, leaving a 
dear area into wliic h another scene 
can be* inserted later. l T nfortu- 
nately. any rc*fle*c tion of the* blue on 
a shiny surface will also disappear, 
resulting in a disc one eiiing “hole" 
through what should Ik* a solid 
obje*c t. Sue It holes have to Ik* pain¬ 
stakingly opaqued out of every* 
frame. 

"Any system has its problems." 
said Ralston. “Some |x*ople become 
outrage*d il theeffec t isn't just right. 
They don't realize that, while you 
want to do the* Ik*s( you canon each 
effe*c t. you know* each shot isn't the* 
whole shoot. There are maybe 10 
more to do and you’ve got two 
weeks to do them in." 

In addition to its glossiness, the 
huge size of the* Enterprise* me del 
caused other problems with the 


blue* screen. On some of the fly-by 
shots, the camera had to Ik* turned 
sideways and liltc*d up in the air to 
keep the blue screen lK*hind the* 
model. When Ralston used a wide- 
angle lens for close ups, the* ship 
would sometimes run off the* edge 
of the blue sc rc*t*n and suddenly the 
stage or the ceiling joists were in 
the* pic ture. 

Die same camera use*d in STAR 
WARS was used to shoot the Enter¬ 
prise* and the other ships. Ralston 
refers to it as the “Flex," short for 
Dystraflex. named foi effects man 
John Dykstta. Even using its c 0111 - 
puteri/ed mount. Ralston and his 
crew were always working on tall 
ladders or on their backs. 

When a shorted wire kncxked 
out some of the* lights in the Enter¬ 
prise* me k!c*1. bunging filming to a 
halt, the* person who was arm-pit 
deep inside the Enterprise—feel¬ 
ing for .1 loose-wire—was 6-foot-5 
Steve Cawley, II.M's supervising 
model maker. The 30-year-old 
Cawley's soft-spoken, shy demean- 
or is in direct contrast to his straw- 
berry blonde* hail and flaming tec! 
!x*ard. 1 h got his job through Jck* 
Johnston, the* sjx*cial effects art 
director for STAR WARS and has 
been at ILM ever since. 

While* the* Enterprise miKlel was 
built (01 the first movie, other mexl- 
els seen in SI A R TR E K11 had t o be 
built from scran h. Flic* most nota¬ 
ble* was the* Reliant, the ship Khan 


commandeers to fight thee limac tic 
space battle with the Enterprise. 
The Reliant was designed at Para- 
motint. and the drawings were se*nt 
to II.M lot execution. Civen con¬ 
trol of the ac tual building. Cawley 
was able to make the* model 
smaller, lighter and its wiring less 
complex than the huge Enterprise. 

In addition to the* Reliant, the 
iiuk1c‘I department made small 
models of both Enterprise and 
Reliant for distant shots, and c lose- 
up sections of each ship for use in 
the* space battle scenes. Said Caw¬ 
ley. "It was very interesting and 
quite a challenge, to construc t 
models so that Ke n Ralston and our 
pyrotechnics expert, Thai tit* Mor¬ 
ris. could blow them to stnither- 
trnson film, without ac tually dam¬ 
aging the model." 

Cawley had only a few months to 
build the mcdels wliic h was tough 
even with his 10 man crew on 
STAR I REK II. “We started in 
September and finished in late 
December." he said. "I've been 
dealing with (lit* producer, Rolx*it 
Salim, sine e late August. I le's been 
very involved." 

Because* of the short schedule, 
Cawley HK>k some short t uts. The 
spac e-lab Regula < )ne is ac tually a 
space station left over from the first 
movie, built by Magic am. It was 
(lit* orbiting platform the crew of 
the Enterprise assembled on before 
boarding their ship in drydock. 


Cawley t<x>k the model, turned it 
upside down. tcx>k a few things off. 
added a few* thingsandc hristenedit 
a “sc ientific " space station. 

"It was cjuite cost effective," he 
said. “It was this apjiroach that 
prevailed throughout the project." 

Ralston was mut h happier with 
II .M's Reliant, than with the Enter¬ 
prise*. “The Reliant is a nice squat 
contraption that l<K>ks a lot more 
believable to me." he said. “The 
shi|> takes the lx*st of the Enter¬ 
prise, rearranges it. and adds a few 
gtKKliesof its own. It's muc h easier 
to have it sit there and l(K>k right. 
And the* model is great. It's made of 
vacu-formed plastic and two guys 
can mount it on the pijx*s for a 
shot." The wiring of the Reliant 
was muc h simpler than the Enter¬ 
prise. Ralston had to painstak¬ 
ingly rewire an elaborate network 
of switches on the Enterprise to a 
big c onsole every time they mounted 
it. 

“I'll piobably getattackedalxmt 
this, hut I'm just not crazy about 
the original design of the Enter¬ 
prise." said Ralston. "It’s a sliajx* 
that does not lend itself easily to 
hxikinggcxxl in the frame. It'shard 
to come u|> with angles that really 
read like anything. There arc* only 
two gtKxf angles on it." 

Another irritating problem for 
Ralston was the Enterprise's exte¬ 
rior lights, wliic h |M)int up surface 
features such as the registration 


55 









Costume Design 


ments. worn by Khan and his band of 
marooned followers. Their basic 
clothing. Fletcher decided, is what 
they had on when they were 
stranded, which were space outfits 
from the 1990s In fact, Fletcher was 
shown the ' Space Seed episode so 
he could work from there 

The rest of what Khan's people 
wear are additions made from pieces 
of the upholstery, drapes and other 
fabrics on the spaceship, plus 
ornaments they’ve made "As in most 
primitive societies, there would be a 
desire for ornamentation." Fletcher 
said. "I proposed that to while away 
the time they made themselves belts, 
necklaces, armbands, and so on, 
from pieces of the spacecraft We 
actually did utilize circuitry, wiring 
and cannibalized machinery." 

Raggedy black robes are what the 
people wear for moving about on the 
planet in the constant sandstorms 
Based on Taureg garments from the 
Sahara. Fletcher and his crew made 
the robes—sort of burnooses—out of 
desert cloth, a heavy nubby cotton. 
They dyed the robes black, and then 
bleached them to show wear, painted 
over them for stains, and dribbled on 
wax. paint, and other muck. 

Each one of Khan's followers also 
was given an individual protective 
mask out of some piece of metal. 

And Fletcher figured that the people 
had made gloves out of vinyl and 
other upholstery material, sort of 
fusing it together with a hot iron, and 
winding other stuff around and 
stitching where possible "Those 
gloves were a bitch to make." said 
Fletcher, "but I’m proud of the way 
they turned out.” 


Robert Fletcher jumped at the chance to get the 
Enterprise crew out of those dumb leisure suits. 


Costume designer Robert Fletcher points to three rings of trapunto stitching on the arms of engineering's protective suits. 
Trapunto was used on the collars of Fletcher’s redesigned Star Fleet uniforms, modeled by William Shatner as Capt. Kirk. 


Costume designer Robert Fletcher 
worked on the first STAR TREK 
movie and welcomed the opportunity 
to redesign Starfleet's uniforms for 
STAR TREK-II "The ones in the last 
movie weren't military enough to suit 
me." he said. "Roddenberry always 
contended that the Federation is not 
a military organization. Yet they 
always behaved as if it were They 
have ranks, they have military 
courtesy, and Kirk is definitely in 
command on his ship." 

Unlike the uniforms from the first 
movie, or the series, the costumes for 
STAR TREK—II look practical and 
durable They have pockets and 
places to put things, outerwear looks 
warm, and there are patches and 
emblems which seem to have 
meaning. For instance. Fletcher 
designed a field coat for protection in 
inhospitable environments with 
pockets and tabs and loops, for all 
the equipment they're likely to carry 
around, like phasers and transponders 

Fletcher also included a shoulder 
patch that shows a schematic view of 
our solar system, with the orbits of 
the planets and Earth pointed up in 
green It's worn by Federation 
personnel who are stationed on 
Earth or are based from Earth, as is 
Captain Kirk. 

Trapunto—a kind of raised 
quilting—was extensively used in the 
wardrobe, both as decoration and for 
practical purposes of padding and 
flexibility at joints in the spacesuits 
A machine produces the bas-relief 
effect by stuffing the areas of outline 
stitchery with soft thread, which it 
shoots in via air pressure, like a spray 
gun. through its hollow needle 

"That trapunto machine saved my 
life." Fletcher said "The machines 
are very rare and are not made 
anymore We had. perhaps, the last 
one in existence on the West Coast, a 
50-year-old handmade antique We 
lived in constant fear that we were 


The costumes of Khan's desert 
survivors were designed by Robert 
Fletcher to appear as if they were 
made from upholstery, circuit wiring 
and spare parts. Khan's outerwear, 
right. A rag-tag follower, above. 

going to break its one and only 
needle, because, of course, you can't 
get them anymore either." 

The needle never did break, but 
Fletcher had one terrible moment 
when he thought the needle had 
been stolen and held for ransom It 
turned out one of the workers had 
taken it away for safekeeping. All the 
trapunto seen in the film came from 
that one simple machine. 

"All the ornamentation is trapunto 
and insets and stitchwork." Fletcher 
said. "If you look at McCoy's outfit 
when he comes to see Kirk at his 


apartment in San Francisco (see 
photos page 55-56). you'll see it’s a 
shirt and very complicated trousers 
with inset panels of color. I also tried 
to bring out the personalities of the 
characters in their clothes. Kirk, for 
instance, is a man who likes luxury, a 
man with an ego He'd like clothes 
which are showy in an elegant way 
Kirk's shirt has trapunto work on the 
cuffs and in the shirtfront." 

The sophisticated clothes worn by 
the crewmembers of the Enterprise 
are a far cry from the barbarian 
splendor, with futuristic embellish¬ 


56 




















number, the vessel’s name, and the 
Star Fleet logo. These lights 
required special handling during 
tlu* filming since they are really 
spotlights cast onto the model and 
don't come from inside the ship or 
from surface-mounted fixtures. 
The s|H>tlights are made from 
"inky” lights. Inky as in inky- 
dinky. The lenses are a couple of 
inc lies in diameter, hut the beam of 
light t an Ik- reduced to a pinpoint. 

Foi Ralston these small lights 
were a huge lieadac he, since every- 
time the ship tolled, all tlu* spot¬ 
lights had to roll with it. It was 
impossible foi tin* whole lighting 
set-up to roll; so Ralston was fore ed 
to do a lot of trick shots like having 
the camera roll and tin* ship stay 
stationary. 

”lt affec ted the flexibility of what 
wee mild do with the models." Ral¬ 
ston said. “Fortunately they’re not 
doing maneuvers like X-wing 
fighters anyway. They sort of 
luinbei along, and it’s what's 
going on all around them that 
creates theexc ilenient in sc enes like 
the grand-slam finale: the battle 
inside a nebula.” 

Dming the fight in the nebula, 
both the Kntei pi ise and the Reliant 
sustain heavy damage. Flu* Enter¬ 
prise at tu.illy has a pan ol its hull 
punctured by phaser fire, lb create 
the damage, Steve Cawley and his 
model-makers fitst sculpted a big 
sec tion of the Enterpr ise. the diago¬ 
nal main strut affair just lielow the 
saucer, out of wax. Flu* shooting 
lights got the wax soft enough foi 
Ralston to go in with sculpting 
tools and animate the phaser file 
opening up the hull like* a can 
opener. 

On the Reliant, the rollbai—the 
piece that stietc lies across the top of 
the ship—blows up. Instead of 
destroying that piece of the iihk1c*I 
and rebuilding it everythin*, it was 
designed so that a lot of the struc¬ 
ture would remain intact. Pail ol 
its skin was wax and (illc*d with all 
sorts of explosive's and little plastic 
scraps called "nernies” that would 
flyout. 

With filming on the optical 
effects already in progress at II.M. 
STAR TREK II s director was 
chosen. "We talked to a lot," pro¬ 
ducer Robert Sallin recalled, "but 
Nick Meyer’s vision of the work 
was the first one that struc k a really 
responsive chord in me. Flu* man is 
a brilliant writer, lie understood 
the story we were trying to tell, 
which transcends high adventure 
on alien planets. Meyer was sensi¬ 
tive and perceptive, and I liked his 
sense* of thecharacter interplay, the 
conflicts, and the human elements 
of the stor>. 11 is ideas hi ought 
dimension that broadened tlu* 
scope of tlu* material as we were 
working on it." 

Robert Fletcher, who designed 
the costumes for the first STAR 
TREK feature, was hired to design 
the costumes for STAR I RFK II 
(see sidebar, page .%). “Nic k Meyer 


enormous stock of old fabrics, 
silks, and pure wcxils, some of them 
10 years old, hut kept in the* dark 
and in gcxxl condition. ' Wonder¬ 
ful natural lilx-is like those are 
almost impossible to find any- 
more," said Fletcher. "Paramount 
is one of the last studios that has 
stcxks and even it is no longer 
acquiring foi the future. When 
theit stocks are gone, there won't lx* 
any more." 

Among the few costume's which 
weren’t made for M AR I RFK II 
are the spacesuits with self-con¬ 
tained life-support systems and 
propulsion hac kpa< ks.and Sjxjc k’s 
Vulcan robes. Roth are styles 
Fletcher designed for the fitst 
STAR I RFK movie. Flu* space- 
suits are made of Spaudcx. 

One challenge in the costume 
design was to make contemporary, 
common-place closure devices, 
such as /ip|x*rs and snaps. Imik 
futuristic. I lie methcxl of closing 
the flap of the jacket, where it 
c losses over the c best, was a hit of a 
problem. Fletcher and his crew 
rejected zip|x*is and buttons right 
off. which left them with either 
hooks or snaps. Fletc her dec idedon 
covered snaps, black, sewn on a 


GAMMA REGULA, a lifeless, barren 

planet which served as the subject of 
the Genesis Project, was constructed at 
effects supplier ILM in San Rafael. 
California. Production coordinator 
Warren Franklin watches the 300 pound 
tabletop set for closeups take shape 
under the hand of modelmaker Bob 
Diepenbrock. For long shots, a half 
sphere mockup (inset) was constructed. 

wanted the* c ostume's to be* dashing, 
and a little* romantic." said Fletc her. 
emphasizing the depaiture from 
tlu* bland uniforms he designed for 
STAR TREK—THE MOTION 
PICTURE. Those designs were 
dictated In Gene* Roddenberry, 
who wanted a "sprayed-on" look, 
and director Rolxn Wise, who 
insisted (he costumes lx* uiono- 
c hromatic to focus attention on the* 
ac tors’ fac e's. 

In changing the Star Fleet uni- 
forms again, prcxlucer Robeit Sal¬ 
lin used the rationale that uniform 
styles in our own present-day Navy 
have c hanged in the* past 10 years. 
"I thought the series uniforms 
Icxiked like* stretc h Dr. De nton’s,” 
said Sallin. "and the first movie’s 
uniforms looked like leisure suits. 
We dec ideel to have uniforms that 
looked like uniforms." To get a 
sleek,colorful, military hxikfoi the 
uniforms of STAR I RFK II. 
Fletcher went hack to traditional 
military fabrics, natural fibers not 
synthetics. 

"I think the reason that clothing 
now seems loose and unstructured 
is that, for all its prac ticality and 
washability. synthetic fibeis don’t 
tailor very well,” said Fletcher. 
"They’re terribly limited in use. 
You can’t mold them. They don’t 
dye, they don’t drape, they don’t do 
a goddamn thing a fabric should 
do. And they have very raw. haul 
colors. 

"'Tlu*colors I wanted for the film 
arc* what I c all corrupt colors,"con¬ 


tinued Fletc her, "a shade off from a 
pure color. Ilu* uniform jackets 
arert’l quite red; Kit k’s civilian 
shitt, in the* scenes at his place in 
San Franc isc o, is a sort of dusty teal 
blue;and Sjxx k’s Vulcan robe isn’t 
a true lilac k—everything is an ‘-ish’ 
color. Marcxinus/i red. brownish 
green. \nn\Ai\h black. 'They’re not 
colors you see today, so in a subtle* 
way they indicate another time." 

Sallin missed the color designa¬ 
tion of the uniforms in the scries, 
wherecac h depaitment had itsown 
color; so Fletc hei came* up with 
white tunics for Command, a soft 
sea-green for Medical, a bluish- 
grey for officers, and a scarlet for 
cadets. Rank and station designa¬ 
tions are carried forward on sleeve 
stri|x*s and some detailing on the 
jac ket fronts. 

Flu* wardrobe for STAR 1 RFK- 
II was made at Western Costume, 
tlu* huge* motion pic ture manufac¬ 
turing and rental facility just off 
the Paramount lot. Paramount has 
a very g<xxl ladies’ department, hut 
the tailoring dc|iartment wasn’t up 
to Fletc her’s standards. 

'The biggest asset of the clothing 
department at Paramount were 
thcii storerooms filled with an 


57 













bl.ic k tape. Even so. when the 
j.k ket was open. they were prettv 
obviously snaps. 

“Nolxxly was happ\ with it.’* 
said Fine her. “'Then I realized that 
what gives them away is the little* 
individual dots and nipples, so I 
took a lot o( very line sil\et\ * ham 
and stitched a few links In-tween 
eac li snap. When it'so|x*n. it’s kind 
ol inystenous-lexiking. You don’t 
know what it is. ma\ lx- some sot t ol 
magnetic * ham.” 

Producer Rolx-n Salim drew 
u|x)ti veterans ol conimei* ialspio- 
due lion in his choices (oi SIAR 
I Rl k II s c inematogiaphft and 
him editot. (.avne Reschei was 
hired as diic a ctot ol photography 
oil the stlength ol Ills woik lot the 
I \ movie HI rrER IIARVISI 
Fditot Hill Dornisch had woiked 
lot Salim on commerc ials and on 
Salim s feature THE PICASSO 
StWIMFR. based on a slot v hv Rav 
Bradbury. 

’flu* producer's cpiest lot effi- 
c ieiuy and streamlining lc*d him to 
the* sets Paramount had stored 
away altet the litst movie. “I dis¬ 
covered tliev had taken J<x- Jen¬ 
nings’design (oi the bridge*, which 
was made in ‘wild’ |moveable) 
pieces, and l<xked it together. It 
was designed to come a|xrrt in 
wedge-shaped sc** lions, and these* - 
lions were on whirls and hydraulic 
sluxk absorbers. Tliev had Ixilted 
them togethei. and put on a c tiling 


piece and hadn't made it wild. I 
couldn't Ix-lieve it. It made heat 
huild up. it made it haul to move 
thecamera. it restiu ted voui angles 
and coverage. I lie liist thing I did 
was oi del that these! In hioken into 
se e lions.” 

Salim also disliked the budge 
set’s use* ol 8mm and Ihmm film 
piojectois lot all the* monitoi dis¬ 
plays. “The images dimi net! unless 
photographed straight on.” he 
said, “and all those * haiteiing pio- 
jectors and humming fhiotesceiit 
lulx*s were* so noisv that eveiv line 
ol dialogue s|xiken on the hi idgein 
the liist film had to lx- ic-rec oicle *tl 
later.” Sallin had the lilmele inciils 
lot the monitors iianslciied to 
v ideo-e assettes. catalogued th**m, 
and put in a master control s\stc*m. 

Production design 

“You have to say, ‘Look, 
that won't work. That 
place isn't there. You 
can't get there front here, 
and the Jans know it!” 

Joseph Jennings, 
production designer 

The designer ol the* bridge* set. 
Joseph Jennings, was hired .is 
STAR TREK U s production 
designer. Jennings begun work on 
S I AR I RKk II after Mike Minor 


had Ix-cn liiietl to storylxjutd the 
script. Jennings had given Minor 
one ol Ins liist jobs in the* business 
— as an illustiatoi on (.l’\- 
S.M( )K1 < whic h Jenningsattdiie** - 
teel loi eight vcais)—and tliev had 
woiked togethei on the liist S 1 AR 
I Rl k It atuie-. "We woi keel togeth¬ 
er like Rogeis and I latnmeistein.” 
said Minor allectionatelv ol then 
collaboration on S 1 AR 1 RKk II. 

As lai as the genial, slow-talk¬ 
ing. white-haiied (itt-year-old pio- 
duction designer is c one ei ned. 
then* isn’t mu* h dillctene e between 
.in ait diiecioi and a picxluclion 
designei. A biggei * ledil. |Xihaps, 
just a single *aiel up flout. “Hut 
whatever you call the- job." Jen¬ 
nings said. ”it amounts to having 
!c*s|x)tisihiliiv lot the look ol the 
pKxhi* lion.” 

Jennings, was one ol three ait 
dint (discreditedon STAR I Rl k— 
I I IE MOTION PICK RE. Jen¬ 
nings had Ix-e-n that (ilin’soiiginal 
ait elite** toi when it was begun as a 
telev ision inov ie. A* cording to Jen¬ 
nings. the laet that the- previous 
SIAR I Rl- k film had so many ait 
elut e tors, in addition to a prcxluc - 
tion designer, is symptomatic ol 
what went wrong with the pKxlu* - 
lion. 

We inael** a camel.” he said. "It 
staiKtl out to lx*.i horse, but a com¬ 
mittee got hold ol it. Everyone got 
into th* act on that movie*. I licit- 
was cic-.itivt* pulling back and 


forth. hmihhng aiouiul. coming 
and going ol |xt>plc* ad infinitum 
and ttd nausrum. Ever voire* who 
woiked on the* ait elite** lion pro- 
v ided too much input to be 
ignoied. so we all got cieelit. and 
Hal Michaelson. biought in as ait 
elite** tot. ended up getting triilit as 
pKxhie lion designer.” 

\eai Iv ev**ryoneon S 1 AR I RF.k 
II expit-sses some disdain loi its 
prede*essor. SI AR 1 RKk—I III 
MOTION PICT! Rl Few are 
cpiite as vehement as art director 
Mike Miiioi. who woiked lot Jen¬ 
nings on the previous him as a 
prcxluc lion illustiatoi. “It was one 
ol the* moiesoiled.milshabby * hap- 
le ts ol I lollv wexxl histoiy. in temis 
oi how |x-oplt* were* treated.” said 
Minoi alxmt the liist film. "The 
trouble, as always, was that the 
wrong people* wen* in cliaige. 
We’ie in a business in whic h the* 
|x*oplc* at the* top. who make the 
decisions, really don’t know a 
damn thing alxiut making pic - 
tuie*s. I think we all knew then that 
we weie associate**! with a bomb. 
It’s loo bad the* movie happened at 
all ” 

Executive producer Halve Ben¬ 
nett and prcxluc e*r Rolx-it Sallin 
made sure that uxi mam c*x>ks 
wouldn’t sjx>iI S I AR I RKk II 
Said Jennings. “I found I larveand 
Boh very congenial working |t.ut- 
ners. They were very leceptive ol 
ideas, ye t due* te*d the w !ioleo)x*ia- 


58 






























(ion with a loose hand and didn’t 
hover.” 

Minor’s feelings about STAR 
TREk II. whit h hr joined in June, 
1981. after working on BRU- 
BAKER. III! SERIAL, and Para¬ 
mount’s 16-hour TV ininiseries, 
THE WINDS OF WAR. are more 
sanguine. " This is soil of an 
unusual undertaking,” he said, ‘a 
motion picture (or theaters pro¬ 
duced by the TV wing of Para¬ 
mount. They have done them selves 
proud. I think the script is excel¬ 
lent. It’s a real STAR IRFK script: 
it’s fun, it’s literate, it's clever, and 
it has humor. 1 hank God. there’s 
whimsey. Suddenly we could bloc k 
out the* memory ol th.it lirst feature 
and we’ve got the energy and drive 
of the best of the TV series. Every¬ 
body (eh good about it.” 

Minor, who looks like* the pirate 
king from “The Pirates of Pe n¬ 
zance”—shaggy hair, bandido 
moustache, stcxky muscular Ixxly 
and a somewhat roguish gtin—isa 
STAR IREk fan. which may 
explain the degree of his bitterness 
over die hist film's missed oppor- 
tunities. 

"Our teclinical consultant. I)i. 
Richard (been ol the |c*t Propul¬ 
sion laboratory, is also a real fan,” 
said Minor. "SoisGayne Reschei. 
the director of photography. He 
really committed himself tothepic - 
lure*, and even came in two weeks 
early to work with Nick Meyer, fig¬ 


uring out how to shoot the htidge. 
People* are going to notice how 
nine ti more interesting the photog¬ 
raphy is in this pic ture hec ausc* the 
c amera is always in motion.” 

Minor talks about STAR I RF.k 
II not only with the zest and enthu¬ 
siasm of someone who helfxd cre¬ 
ate it. hut with the addc*d c barge of 
someone who is doing just what 
lie’s always dreamed of doing. 
When STAR TREk hit the air¬ 
wave's in 1967, Minor was inspired. 
”1 s|M*nt about lout months, work- 
ing all hours after my regular jobs, 
doing sketches and watercolors of 
alien landsca|x*s, costumes, crea¬ 
ture’s. till I had a portfolio,” he said. 
Minor called Desilu and asked for 
an appointment with series creator 
(b*nc* Rodde n berry. In one of many 
instances of Roddenberry’s legend¬ 
ary kindness to fans, Minot was 
invited to hi ing his artwork to the 
studio. 

“Gene liked the artwork, and he 
had me show it to die ait director. 
Matt Jeffries,” said Minor. “Jeff¬ 
ries Ixuight about twenty pieces to 
use* as art objec ts around the ship. 
Some of the diners were hanging 
in Me Cov'soffic e and c abin during 
the tliiid season. A creature head I 
did in latex became tlu* Melkot in 
’Spectre of the Cun.* I later disco¬ 
vered that, in my ignorance, I had 
stumbled upon the* only route by 
which I could have sold to the 
show . . . by bringing art in on 


CETI ALPHA V is the inhospitable 
desert planet on which Captain Kirk 
marooned Khan. Captain Terrell (Paul 
Winfield) and Commander Chekov 
(Walter Koenig) beam down to the 
planet's surface (left), unaware of 
Khan's presence. The set was con¬ 
structed on stage 8. the largest sound- 
stage at Paramount Picture's Hollywood 
studios. Production designer Joseph 
Jennings (far left), with art director 
Michael Minor (top left), inspect the set 
under construction, platformed to a 
height of 25 feet. Onto this mat-covered 
wooden base was dumped tons of 
colored sand and Fuller's earth, a fine 
powder. Four huge Ritter fans were 
used to blow the dust and sand into a 
blinding storm. An immense cyclo- 
rama. painted to match the set. was 
hung around the walls of the sound- 
stage. Film crews (right) were forced to 
wear cover-alls, boots, masks, and 
goggles with the camera and all 
equipment shrouded in plastic to 
prevent breakdowns. Cast members 
had only their costumes for protection. 
Winfield and Koenig (bottom left) are 
shown, sans helmets, during a lull in 
filming. The actors found their costumes 
almost as uncomfortable as the set The 
spandex spacesuits from STAR TREK— 
THE MOTION PICTURE, ware unvent¬ 
ilated. The actors had only five minutes 
of air once the helmets were attached 
and had to signal by voice mike when a 
breather was necessary. Some agitated 
arm-waving was occasionally necessary 
when the mikes broke down. In the 
original script. Ceti Alpha V had been 
an ice planet. After three days of 
filming on the set, production designer 
Joseph Jennings regretted his 
decision to change it “On a refrig¬ 
erated set,'' he observed, “you can 
always wear thermal underwear." 

s|x*(. Tnion regulations prevented 
tlu* production toni|xiny from com¬ 
missioning work from an outside 
contractor, hut they could buy 
existing material.” 

Jennings, like Minor, is an old 
hand at STAR TREk. lie worked 
for art director Matt Jeffr ies, an old 
friend, drawing the set designs for 
the original television series. In 
designing STAR TREk II. Jen¬ 
nings kept the layout of the Enter¬ 
prise consistent with the blueprint 
drawings of the ship (created by 
Fran/ Joseph Designs) that were 
merchandised after the TV series 
left the air. 



Cinematographer Gayne Rescher and 
1st camera assistant Catherine Coulson 

"We were stuck with that sche¬ 
matic,” said Jennings, “hut I think 
we should lx* stuck with it. It's |xirt 
of the STAR TREK universe now. 
The fans are familiar with how the 
Enterprise* looks and works, so it all 
has a sort of de facto existence, a 
bogus logic. You have to work with 
that, and I think a production 
designer has to realize it. Directors, 
tcx». Sometimes they’re hard toe on- 
vince and you have to do a sales job. 
You have to say, *L<x>k, that won’t 
work, that place isn’t there. You 
can’t get there from here, and the 
fans know it. If you want todoyour 
own outer space movie, then gooff 
and do it. hut don't call it SEAR 
IREK.” 

Having his production design 
ring true is of gteat concern to Jen¬ 
nings. “I always think of an anec¬ 
dote that John Barrymore sup¬ 
posedly told,” he said. “Someone 
asked him how lie* portrayed such a 
convincing limp when lie* played 
Richard III. lie told them he just 
pointed the toes of his right hx>t at 
the instep of his left foot, and 
walked the best way he could. Bar¬ 
rymore established a frame of refer¬ 
ence. and then was as honest as he 
could be within that frame. So once 
the writer and producer and direc¬ 
tor and the* whole creative group 
establish the frame of referenceona 
pnxluc tion, I just try to be as honest 


A close-up of ILM's light-weight vacu-formed plastic model of the Reliant. Khan’s 
ship, which was lighter, less complex, and easier to film than the Enterprise. 
















as I can within it.” 

Jennings' respect for the ground¬ 
work laid bv the series bn night sub¬ 
tle character points to his sets and 
furnishings for STAR 1 Rl k II. 
kirk's apartment in San Francisco 
has a collet tion o( antiques. In the* 
series, kiik's interest in history is 
brought up many times without 
being belabored. 

It is kiik who quickly realizes 
when and where they are in tin- 
many episodes whic h involve lime- 
hinding or recreations of |>ast cul¬ 
tures like "City on the Edge of 
Forever.” “A Piece of the Action,” 
“Shore Leave,” 'Tomorrow is Yes¬ 
terday.” “Patterns of Force,” and 
others, iin hiding the seminal epi¬ 
sode for STAR I RFk II. “Space 
Seed.” 

' ll might have been a me e tout h 
il some of kitk's ‘antique's' had 
been objects from our own pres¬ 
ent.” said Jennings. "We thought 
about it and had the urge, but wesat 
down till it went away, for thesake 
o( appealing to a broader audit-lie e. 
A sophisticated audience of STAR 
I RFk fans and science fiction 
huffs would love and applet iate 
the irony in something like that. 
But ii I were to lake a perfectly 
logical present-day artifact, say a 
toaster, and imply that this is an 
antique to kirk, either I'd have to 
make a story |>oitii of it or your 
average Joe Doaks would Ik- think¬ 
ing ‘Gee Whiz, that's a toaster 
... what's antique about that?” 

As in the series. Spock has his 
quarters furnished with Vulcan ait 
objec ts. Producer Robert Sal I in 
wanted the centerpiece to Ik- a 
tapestry of the- Vulcan IDIC (In fi¬ 
nite Diversity in /nfinite Combi¬ 
nation) a revered c ultural symlxd 
of the weltanschaung of Vulcan. 
Spoc k's home planet. 

While there wasn't lime to com¬ 
mission the tapestry (which Jen¬ 
nings said, "in drawing’s, made 
SpcKk's cabin lcn>k like an opium 
den”), Jennings and Mike Minor 
kept Sabin's choice of the /D/C 
symbol and came up with a quic k. 
cheap and colorful substitute: a 
wall mural composed of hundreds 
of tiny metal discs whic h has a 


THE GENESIS TAPE is a computer 
simulation of the terraforming capabili¬ 
ties of Project Genesis. The computer 
generated images were created by 
Sprocket Systems, a film research 
division of Lucasfilm. in conjunction 
with ILM. Illustrating the 67 second 
sequence, which is seen from the point 
of view of an on-rushing deep space 
probe, from left to right, top to bottom: 
1) the probe approaches a dead, 
airless planet, and fires the Genesis 
device, which impacts with a flash of 
light; 2) fire races across the surface of 
the planet; 3) the surface melts, 
sending up huge clouds of gas that 
eventually form an atmosphere; 4) the 
surface cools, and geographical 
features begin to form; 5) the probe 
swoops down a long, narrow canyon 
and out across a sea beginning to fill; 
and 6) the probe flips over to look back 
at the receding world, now a green and 
blue hospitable planet. ILM effects 
co-supervisor Jim Veilleux conceived 
the Genesis Tape to replace a scripted 
live-action sequence in which the 
Genesis device was to be demonstrated 
by turning a rock into a flower. A ten 
man computer graphics team headed 
by Alvy Ray Smith and Loren Carpenter 
worked five months on the sequence. 
ILM matte artist Chris Evans was 
called-in to paint the sequence by 
computer, inputting visual data by the 
movements of a computer-linked light 
pen across a flat two-dimensional 
grid-field. Movements of the light pen 
are recorded by a computer that 
displays the picture 30 frames a second 
on a video terminal above the grid. 
Programs in the computer could be 
selected by Evans to sketch, select 
colors, paint and manipulate his 
artwork, including one program which 
wrapped it around the planetary sphere. 

soft iridescence, I ike* the scales of 
a butterfly wing, with theconvinc - 
mg look of some alien artistry (see 
photo, below). 

To Southern (Californians how¬ 
ever. the IDIC may l<K>k suspi¬ 
ciously like a “Sparkletts” sign, 
which shimmer intriguingly on 
the sides of delivery trucks for a 
local brand of bottled spring water 
and. in some respects. that is 
exactly what it is. 

“I was dubious, at first,” admit¬ 
ted producer RoIk-ii Salim, about 
gi\ing the go-ahead to have it 
made. "It looks expensive hut 
wasn't. Flu- chap who makes the 


Spock (Leonard Nimoy) meditates in his quarters, dominated by a shimmering 
metallic tapestry of the Vulcan IDIC (left), a sign of Vulcan's universal humanism. 




signs came with his little kit. whic h 
is really only a punc h, some swivel 
wire things, and all these liny little 
reflec live metal discs that come in a 
range of hundreds of colors and 
tones. I le worked from a big design 
and put it together in no time.” 

Jennings reused a number of sets 
Ih mi the first movie. In addition to 
the set he- de signed for the Filter- 
prise bridge, whichdirector Robert 
Wise had Ik»Iu*c1 together, he pul led 
from storage the hiidge set of the 
klingon c miser, whic h was redres¬ 
sed as part of the Enterprise doc k- 
ing bay. ()tlu-i portionsof the klin- 
gou ship Ik-c aim- the transporter at 
Spac e I .ah Regula One. I hc- Enter¬ 
prise bridge was redressed to 
become the bridge of the Reliant. 
"That’s a fact of movie-making 
called I hc- Price Is Right.'" Jen¬ 
nings said. "The sets were already 
built. It would have Ix-en profit- 
agate and fcxdish not to use them.” 

Jennings modified the look of 
the existing Enterprise se ts to get 
the sleeket. more utilitarian l<M>k 
that director Nicholas Meyer 
wanted. One new set built is the 
Enterprise* toqxdo loom, a part of 
the ship that has never been shown 
before. 

While many of S FAR I REKII's 
sets came from the first movie, 
many of the props that dress t he sets 
came from John Zabrucky’s Mod¬ 
ern Props. I lis fac ility. just outside 
Los Angeles, designs and builds 


lx>th hand propsand large self-con¬ 
tained props which form parts of 
sets. 

The production rented many 
sizes and styles of prop computer 
units which now stand in shadowy 
ranks amid Zabruc kv's main store- 
rcK»m. T hey are seen in the engine 
room of the Enterprise and in var¬ 
ious areas of Space Lab Regula 
()ne. As muc h as 30 feet of set can Ik- 
dressed with Zabruc ky's computers. 

Mod tin Props also made many 
of the- hand props seen in the film, 
including new trie orders, new 
wrist communicator devices, an 
electronic dustmop. futuristic fire- 
extinguishers. several varieties of 
medical instruments, some small 
cargo containers which l<K>k like 
miniature Apollo capsules, a 
flange-necked liquor bottle that 
McCoy presents to kirk ear l\ in the 
film and new hand communicators. 

The hand communicators arc- 
basic ally a Vietnam War walkie- 
talkie unit, stripped of paint and 
plated with chrome. "It was what 
Paramount wanted," said Zabruc ky. 
“We had a really great design that 
we wanted to build, hut they were 
fixed on these things.” 

In contrast, the* trborder and 
medical instruments look busi¬ 
nesslike and have an aura of tec h- 
nology. rather than movie prop. 
Lights that seem tohavcsomejmr- 
pose move within them, and they 
lcK>k nigged and durable. “You 
















should set* ihe phaser we wanted to 
build." Zabrucky said. "we did 
make one as a sample, but Para¬ 
mount preferred to use the phasers 
that were made lor the first movie." 


AMAZING PLACES 

“In the first movie the 
special effects became 
the tail that wagged the 
dog. In this one, the 
effects integrate nicely. ” 
Joseph Jennings, 
production designer 

The surface of planet Ceti Alpha 
V, a desert where Kahn and his 
followers have been marooned, 
was built utilizing the entirety of 
Paramount's Stage 8. one of tilt* 
biggest soundstageson the lot. The 
floot was built over in scaffolding 
to raise a surface resembling an 
eroded landscape, overlaid with 
fltxiring and mats, and covered 
with tons of sand and Fuller’s 
earth, a fine powder. Four huge 
Ritter fans, whic h look like caged 
airplane propellers, were used to 
blow dust around. An immense 
cydorama of the dust storm-swept 
sky was hung around the walls of 
the soundstage. The filmmakers 
wore coveralls, boots, masks, and 
goggles, and all equipment was 
shrouded in plastic during filming. 


Ceti Alpha V, in early scripts, 
was to have been an ice planet. 
Production designer Joseph Jen¬ 
nings and art director Michael 
Minor preferred the desert environ¬ 
ment from a design standpoint, 
and c hanged the concept in prepro- 
duction. "We had cause to remem¬ 
ber that change, ruefully, when we 
were on the set breathing Fuller’s 
earth," said Jennings. "We were 
just praying for the camera not to 
spring a dust leak. Alteration! three 
days we sort of wished we’d gone 
for the ice planet after all. You can 
always put on thermal underwear, 
if you actually refrigerate the 
stage." 

The actors, as well as the crew, 
came to rue the set of Ceti Alpha V. 
Walter Koenig as Chekov and Paul 
Winfield as Captain Terrell had to 
wear spacesuits when they beam 
down to the planet's surface. 

"The suits were heavy," said 
Roenig, “as was the apparatus that 
went over our shoulders and back 
to sup|x>rt the helmets. But the 
most disquieting ptoblem was the 
helmet itself. Nothing had been 
done about ventilating it. and otu e 
it was on, we had four or five min¬ 
ute's worth of air inside, and that 
was it. Periodically, between takes, 
someone would shove an air hose 
under the helmet and fill it up with 
fresh air. 

"We had two mikes in our 
helmets," he continued, "one for 



tecording dialogue and one which 
was used to talk with the director or 
each other. Sometimes the mikes 
wouldn't lx* switched on, so no one 
would hear us say we were running 
out of air. If we started to get light 
headed from lack of oxygen, we’d 
go around tapping our helmets, 
hoping someone would under¬ 
stand we were in trouble. Assoonas 
we’d stop shexiting. even for four or 
five minutes. I’d always ask that the 
helmet and its support lx* taken 

off" 

Koenig said he enjoyed recreat¬ 
ing the Chekov character from the 
old series, one more time. “I wasn’t 
on the Enterprise in this movie, 
and simply by virture of that fact 1 
had more opportunity for my char¬ 
acter to show a bit more color.” he 
said. "On the Enterprise I was 
pretty well relegated to pushing 
buttons and saying things like. 
‘Torpedos away!’ By being first 
officer on (he Reliant, with Cap¬ 
tain Terrell, I wasn’t compelled to 
speak in monosyllabic three-word 
sentences." 

On Ceti Alpha V. Chekov and 
Ferrell are infested by an alien par¬ 
asite called the Ceti cel, an effect 
supplied by 11.M's Ken Ralston. 
"That was one of the more enjoya¬ 
ble |xirts of the movie, for me,” said 
Ralston. "The Paramount people 
asked for cels, so I needed some¬ 
thing that would lx* able to slither. 
But considering the desert-1 ike 


environment of the planet, 1 
thought it should have a real tough 
shell and Icxik leathery." 

I he final de sign is a convincing- 
looking c reature similar to a giant 
ant-lion or earwig. The "mother” 
is about 14" long and the “babies” 
come in several sizes and degree's of 
development. The earliest stage isa 
very slimy larval state that infests 
the ears of a host. These babies hide 
on the mother's back, underneath 
the plating. The mother puppet is 
designed with rods that come from 
underneath the tail section. The 
rcxls make tlu* pup|x*t move with a 
sort of snaky, thrashing way and 
there is also a mechanism for work¬ 
ing the jaws in the head. The baby 
pup|x*is are made of foam rubber 
and pulled along by means of a 
piece of monofilament fishing 
line. They're cut so that the front 
half pulls the back half, in a sort of 
inc lung motion. 

Walter K<x*nig and Paul Win¬ 
field came to Ralston 'sshop for one 
day to shcxit the effects sequences 
with the eels. “We had the eels 
crawling all over their faces for 
hours," said Ralston. "I'm sur¬ 
prised they Ixxh didn't rise up and 
try to kill me. We’d dip the eels in 
thisgexj, for their slime. Ihe stuff is 
very unpleasant to have on your 
skin, especially your fac e, and you 
can’t get it off. It's specially made 
by some guy in L.A. who makes all 
sorts of gcxjs and glops and gunk 


61 
















Two stages of VCE's new look in transporter effects, as Kirk and his parly beam up from the Genesis Cave, showing moire patterns and strobing light effects. 


Optical Effects by Visual Concepts Engineering 

It’s “Beam me up, Mr. Kuran," when Peter Kurart’s VCE company clevises postproduct ion opt icals. 



VCE's multi-beam phaser effect with lens flares, as Kirk destroys a Ceti eel. 


"The way we wanted to do the 
transporter effect would have been 
more interesting than what they 
ended up with." Peter Kuran said of 
the animation work his optical effects 
company, Visual Concept Engineer¬ 
ing. did for STAR TREK II. "We 
would have liked to show a person's 
body sort of building as he was 
beaming in ... skeleton appearing 
first, then veins, and finally clothing. 
Not exactly like THIS ISLAND 
EARTH, but more like an effect I 
once saw on THE OUTER LIMITS. 

"But Paramount wanted a very 
high-tech electronic look, with a 
moire effect and strobes and 
flashes." Kuran continued. "And one 
of the things they emphasized was 
that they didn't want to use freeze- 
frames for the transporter process, 
the way they had in the old series 
and in the first movie. They tried to 
make a point of having people 
moving while they were being trans¬ 
ported We did a lot of articulate 
mattes to follow most of the action in 
those sequences, which took a lot of 
time. Then they decided they didn't 
want to see that effect, so we ended 
up throwing most of them away." 

In addition to the transporter 
effect. Kuran’s company added 
animation effects to scenes involving 
Phaser hits and dematerializations, 
some exterior scenes in a sandstorm 
on Ceti Alpha V, and the radiation 
effect for the scene in which Spock 
receives his fatal radiation burns. 


Visual Concepts Engineering, 
employs a staff of from four to eight 
artists in a Hollywood building that 
once served a porno film production 
company. VCE received its work on 
STAR TREK II through Industrial 
Light and Magic. "Our company has 
done a number of jobs either directly 
or indirectly through ILM." Kuran 
said. "The stuff they don't have time 
for they farm out to me. I used to 
work for ILM before leaving to form 
my own company, so they know me 
and what I can do." 

At 25. Kuran is already a veteran of 


six years experience in the optical 
effects business. "I was 19 when I 
worked on STAR WARS, and the 
next year I did my first free-lance 
work, the optical animation on a 
piece of junk called THE DARK " 
kuran left ILM after THE EMPIRE 
STRIKES BACK hoping the freedom 
would give him the opportunity to do 
new things 

"I started working with film," Kuran 
said, "looking into things that most 
people consider too basic or too 
boring, like how different images 
react to each other and what film is 


actually doing during the different 
phases of the printing process I 
bought an old 16mm contact printer 
and started trying out different film 
stocks and different processes Then 
I got to know some people with 
optical printers and used them in the 
middle of the night. Sunday morning, 
odd times like that." 

It was Kuran's work on DRAGON- 
SLAYER—44 shots including the 
spear-forging, the glowing amulet, 
the resurrection and the sword 
fights—that established his fledgling 
company and proved to the industry 
that the money allocated for Kuran's 
effects would be well spent. 

After DRAGONSLAYER. Kuran’s 
company worked on CONAN THE 
BARBARIAN and THE THING, 
before taking on STAR TREK II. 
Kuran has never regretted leaving 
the shelter of a big company. I’m 
having a ball.” he said. "Every job is 
different and I'm getting to do new 
things, which is why I wanted to 
strike out with my own company in 
the first place 

"In this business, on every job your 
sticking your neck out just enough 
that you're doing something you 
haven't done before." Kuran 
continued. "A client comes in; you 
decide on something; and you shake 
hands on it. When he leaves, you sit 
down and start figuring it out 
because often you have absolutely 
no idea how it's going to look or 
exactly how you'll do it. It's great" 


Spock sacrifices himself amid VCE's reactor glow when he manually repairs the Enterprise warp drive, as the helpless Mr. Scott and Dr. McCoy watch in horror. 



62 


























for various uses in movie-making." 

Actually, Koenig did n’t mind 
the facet raw ling sc enes. " The only 
pat I I really hated was when they 
start the shot in whit htheeelcomes 
out of my ear," he said. "I fall down 
on the Hoot and we go toac lose up. 
real close, as it emerges. They 
stuffed the little latex eel. with 
some of that sticky slime stuff, 
down in my ear. That was pretty 
unpleasant." 

For the close upshot of aCelieel 
coming out of Chekov’s ear, Ral¬ 
ston sc ulpted a huge model ear cast 
from Koenig's ear. Ralston reused 
the mother eel as a baby eel with the 
scaled-up eat. To set up the shot, 
Koenig laid on a section of thefloor 
of the Genesis Cave set btought up 
from Paramount. File eels were 
moved by Selwyn Eddy III using 
monofilament line threaded up 
through a hole in the Hooting 
utulci Koenig's body. 

"It looks quite satisfying!)* dis¬ 
gusting." said Ralston. "Some¬ 
thing about the idea < >f a creature in 
your ear just makes everyone 
cringe. We did several variations of 
each shot, to pick the best—a dry 
shot, one with some blood, and the 
Fangoria shot, with a lot of gore." 

Originally, the script called for 
an animal to attach itself to the 
back of the neck. But producer 
Ruber t Salim wanted something to 
provide a more visceral reaction. 

The idea is that the eel goes 
inside your ear and wraps itself 
around your cerebral cortex. They 
rendei you susceptible to sugges¬ 
tion. "It was an amazing device 
that Ken Ralston built," said Sal- 
liti. "When you see it on the screen 
you believe it. Everythin* we show 
that scene, everyone goes T’rrrgh.’" 

Though Ceti Alpha V repre¬ 
sented STAR I REK IPs biggest 
set. production designer Joseph 
Jennings called the Genesis Cave 
his toughest assignment. The set 
was to show the result of the Projec t 
Genesis terraforming experiment 
whic h transforms the interior of a 
hollow dead planetoid Gamma 
Rcgula. Jennings wanted to develop 
a geology that didn't look like 
Carlsbad Caverns. During discus¬ 
sions with art director Mike Minor. 
Minor remembered the distinctive 
caves in William Cameron Menzies 
great little B-picture, INVADERS 
FROM MARS (1953). 

"In that film, some sort of laser 
weapon forms the tremendous c av¬ 
erns that the Martians lived in," 
said Minor, a film buff who credits 
George Pal's DESTINATION 
MOON for tiiggeiing bis interest 
in science fiction at age 10. " There 
was a lot of bubbling and frothing, 
and after the caves cooled you saw 
nothing but glass bubbles, eight or 
10 inches across, all over the walls. I 
found out years later that they were 
condoms, inflated, stuck thtough 
holes, and painted." 

Jennings laughed at Minor's 
story, but liked the idea. The Gene¬ 
sis machine in the script was capa¬ 



SPOCK & SAAVIK are birds of a 
feather. Leonard Nimoy as Captain 
Spock gets an earlul from director 
Nicholas Meyer on the bridge set. and 
takes it both in stride and in character. 
The supercilious Lt. Saavik (Kirstie 
Alley, inset), is half-Vulcan, half- 
Romulan. and Spock's protegee. 

ble of breaking matter into its 
atoms and then reassembling them 
into a form capable of sup|x>iting 
life. Jennings reasoned there 
would lx* a tremendous amount of 
heat generated. 

"We decided that the planet's 
surface would bubble." said Jen¬ 
nings. "Someof the bubbles would 
pop as they congealed and cooled. 
I've seen lava like that in (he 
Hawaiian Islands. It was a matter 
of doing that on a scale so the cave 
could appeal to lx* five miles long 
by three miles wide by two miles 
high." 

The live action portion of the 
Genesis Cave is actually fairly 
small, a bowl sha|x*d set represent¬ 
ing only one of the planet's popped 
lava bubble's. About 300 feel across, 
the scale of the set in relation to the 
cave, is that of your thumbnail to 
your living room. Vegetation pro- 
\ ides a primordial lcx»k. Tree ferns, 
moss and lie hens make it appear as 
if life were starting anew. The semi¬ 
circular form of the burst bubble 
was made fot Paramount by a c om- 
pany that manufactures domed 
swimming pcxd covers. Set in fiber- 
glass, from a mold, the bubble form 
was carved and painted to form a 
section of the cave. 

A camera pullhac k from the bub¬ 
ble set, showing the cave in its 
entirety, is a sjx-c ial effects tour dr 
four. Multiple passes insert mov¬ 
ing waterfalls, mist, changes in 
lighting and coloration, and sun¬ 
light sparkling on an undet ground 
lake, courtesy of ILM. Observed 


Jennings: "In the first movie I felt 
that the special effects became the 
tail that wagged (he dog. In this 
one. the effects and the story inte¬ 
grate very nicely, complementing 
each other." 

The Genesis Cave effects were 
executed at ILM, and featured a 
matte painting by Frank Orda/and 
two by Chris Evans. "When some¬ 
thing is this fantastic in the first 
place, it makes it doubly difficult to 
convince an audience that they’re 
not Icxiking at a painting," said 
Evans. "The Cave had to look 
incredible and like nothing anyone 
had ever seen before, but at the same 
time it had to lexrk inviting, like a 
place you could enjoy living in for 
the rest of your life. It’s a gigantic, 
lush underground jungle, but it 
couldn't look dank or claustro¬ 
phobic. The c losest reference to 
that hxik was found in the land¬ 
scape fx»im»ng§ of Flunk Chunh . 
In the 19th c entury he had done a 
number of paintings of the Amazon 
jungle at sunrise and sunset. 
They’ve got a golden, my stical.and 
tropical feeling.” 

An artific ial sun moves through 
the cave. Kirk is taken out onto a 
promontory and looks out across a 


panorama including a moving 
waterfall, rays from the dawning 
sun move through the cave as Kirk 
watches, and there are clouds 
pierced with shafts of sunlight. 

To achieve these effects, Evans 
used a number of old and new 
tric ks. To create the shafts of sun¬ 
light shining through the c louds 
be used a half-silvered mirror, 
placed between his matte painting 
and the camera, in front of the lens 
at a 15° angle. The mirror reflected 
the shafts of light into the camera 
lens, whic h also sees through the 
mirror to the painting. The light 
shafts are chalk lines Evans drew 
on black paper. 

For the dawning sun effec|, 
where light comes across the sur¬ 
face of the c liffs, Evans did a set of 
highlight paintings which he dou¬ 
ble exposed gradually into the 
main matte painting, revealing the 
light stcroM l)k‘ * j)h of the cu e. 

The idea of a moving waterfall in 
a matte painting may sound very 
difficult to accomplish. "It’s sim¬ 
ple, really," Evans insisted. "The 
obvious solution was togeta rotat¬ 
ing cotton wheel kind of a device. 
We did a painting of a waterfall 
with the water motion accomp- 


63 
















1 1 sli«*d by the cotton moving behind 
cut-out sh.i|M s of the* water chan¬ 
nels. We did the main (Miming 
without the* waterfall, and double 
excised dir waterfall into it.” 

Though laced with what art 
direc tor Mike Minor calls a “tight 
budget.” ST AR I RFk II is tilled 
with grandiose* visions, like tlit* 
Genesis Cave, affordable because 
of design ingenuity and economy. 
One of Minor’s money-saving 
tricks called lot the use of a fore¬ 
ground miniature*, seen early in ilie 
film. 

kirk and Spue k have been strol¬ 
ling through Star Fleet Academy 
hallways, talking, and they (xiuse 
hy an elevator. In a fairly wide shot, 
they stand underneath a large sky¬ 
light. with open skv overhead, 
hanging plants, a stairway, and a 
detailed c one rete bas-relief wall vis¬ 
ible. Minor built a miniature of the* 
set bec ause* he didn’t have the stage 
space or time to build a full vesti¬ 
bule oi lobby sc*t. 

**1 bad the* model shop put 
together this miniature on a scale 
of one qua ter inc h to one foot,” he 
said. ”1 had everything installed 
over the weekend, and on Monday 
morning, our fiist day ol shooting 
oil the* film, wc* did the* shot. Die 
camera was |M>siiioncd oiu* loot 
above the flooi. shooting though 
this model, recording the actors 10 
feet away. We had pillars set upthat 
masked the end of our stage set.and 


the skylight had its own little sky 
scene Ixickdrop painted, in whic h 
you can see the arc hilecturc of the 
elevator shaft on up ihmugh the* 
skylight, as a c ylinder. 

“It’s an old F.uglish tec Imique.” 
Minor acldctl. “a foreground mini¬ 
ature tied to live ac lion, but I don’t 
think anyone watc hi tig the film, is 
going to realize it. One day at the 
dailies we me ntioned to the* editor. 
* I his shot comes light alte*i the 
foreground miniature shot* and hr 
hadn’t realized what it was.” 

Money was also saved by imagi¬ 
native recycling. In a scene set at 
kirk’s San Francisco apartment. 
Minor used a bac kdrop from IT IK 
TOWERING INFERNO instead 
of painting Ins own Sail Franc ise o 
or matting it in. "We got an 80-loot 
(xirtion from 20th Century-Fox.” 
lie said. ”It shows the* city lights 
across the Bay, backlit. It’s really 
very nice.” I lie set ol kirk’s apart¬ 
ment was construc ted on Stage 8. 
utilizing an existing lower level 
accessible under the* floor ol the* 
stage to toim a sort of item It ac toss 
the stage*. Minor positioned minia- 
ture buildings, made out of s|xm* 
parts fiom tlic* fiist movie, with 
lighted moving exterior elevators, 
as part of Kirk’s window \ iew. 

"They were built to a sc ale of one 
half inc h to one (exit.’’ lie said, "and 
putting them in the trench, nearei 
the* camera than the* backdrop, 
gives a persjjec live and depth to the 


scene. People will only see them in 
a quic k flash as the camera pans 
across the* room, but (be\ add a 
ically nice tone h.” 

SPOCK’S ears 

“Nimoy came in on a 
Friday af ternoon. / had 
to have a set of ears 
ready Monday morning." 

Werner Keppler, 
makeup artist 

Whe n STAR I REK-II Iwfpm In 
take* sha|M*. the* pioduc ers received a 
letter fiom Fred Phillips, who had 
done the make up on the* television 
sene s as well .is STAR TREK— 
IT IK MOTION PICTURE, that 

because ol eye problems In* would 
not lx* able to work oil the projec t. 
Paramount turned to Werner 
Keppler, a makeup artist with c on- 
sideruble ex|x*rience in appliance 
work and fantasy makeups, who 
got bis big bleak working on John 
Chamber's makeup team fen 
PLANK FOF 1 III \PES. 

In contrast to some of the* e pi¬ 
sodes ol the* television seiies. and 
even tin* fiist movie, makeup 
requirements lot STAR I RFk-II 
were* not extensive. (Idled leu were 
makeups to show injui ies suffered 
hv various c harac teis. and S|mm k’s 
famous ears, which are prac tic allv 


the hallmaik—one lu*sitates to say 
the earmark—of the entire Star 
I rek mythos. 

T sup(x>sc* the* c*ais were inv big¬ 
gest (x*l(M*tual he .id.u he . ke ppler 
said. ”Lc*onard Nimoy was in 
(illina making the* MARC A ) PC )I.() 
mini-seric*s right up to a lew clays 
Im’Ioic* his part in this movie Ixgan; 
so I couldn’t take* the impressions 
of his ears from whic h to make the 
S|xh k ear-tips. Nimoy c amc* in on a 
Friday afternoon, and as soon as he 
got in from the airport, piac tic ally. 
I took the* impressions: I had to 
have* a set of ears ready to use on 
Monday morning.” 

keppler started fiom scratch, 
making the molds, and then the 
c ars, all in just a littleover 18 hours. 
With no chance to try them on 
Nimoy. kcpplei bad to guess the 
angle at which to attach the* 
appliances. They worked fine* that 
fiist clay ol shooting, but kepplei's 
lieadac lie s were just Ix'ginning. 

I was uevet able to have a set of 
eats reach in advance*." lie said. 
"They can onlv Ik* used once, 
Ik c arise it iuiiis them when they're 
removed, so there bad to lx* a new 
set made every day. I only had one 
mold, and every night after shoot¬ 
ing I bad to go home and make the* 
ne xt day’s ears.” 

It took three to four hours for the 
latex ears to set in the molds, livery 
night keppler had ears in the oven 
baking like* cookies. " 1 hey’d bake 


64 











ENTERPRISE & RELIANT are the 
two Star Fleet battlecruisers that fight 
during the film. The USS Enterprise is 
again under the command of Admiral 
Kirk; the Reliant is commandeered by 
Khan, Kirk’s old nemesis. The Enter¬ 
prise model, built under the supervision 
of Jim Dow at Magicam for STAR 
TREK—THE MOTION PICTURE, was 
crated and shipped to ILM in San 
Rafael. California, for reuse. Shown 
uncrating the model on arrival (far left) 
clockwise, from foreground, model 
shop supervisor Steve Gawley. effects 
co-supervisor Ken Ralston, camera 
assistant Sel Eddy, and stagehand Bill 
Beck. Gawley's model ship built the 
Reliant, shown (left) being mounted for 
filming, bottoms up. on a motion 
control device by Gawley and technical 
assistant Joe Fulmer. The ship, 
somewhat different in configuration 
from the Enterprise, was designed by 
art director Michael Minor. The Enter¬ 
prise. machined from metal and jam- 
packed with intricate wiring for practi¬ 
cal lights, was reportedly built at a cost 
of $1 million. The ILM crew soon found 
themselves cursing the model's weight 
and complexity. Gawley made the 
Reliant out of lightweight vacu-formed 
plastic, for ease of handling, and 
simplified the wiring to accomplish 
only those effects outlined in the 
storyboards. Douglas Trumbull, who 
filmed the Enterprise model in the first 
STAR TREK, revealed to American Film 
magazine that ILM requested help in 
hooking up the Enterprise lighting 
system. According to Trumbull, his 
own company had underbid ILM for the 
effects work on STAR TREK II by $1.5 
million, but lost the business because 
Paramount wished to cement their 
relationship with Lucaslilm begun on 
RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK. 


barely singe. I used the candle to 
singe tlie wig hair down into a 
wound on khan's head, and while I 
was doing it kicardodidn't move a 
muscle. He knew exactly what I 
wasdoiugand he wasn’t bothered." 

kepplei also created .1 s|x*c ial 
makeup loi Leonard Nimoy to rep¬ 
resent the progressive effec t of radi- 
ation burns which cause* Spock's 
death, doing a hit of medical 
research in the process. 

Despite all the hard work and the 
pressures of a rushed production 
schedule, kepplei is looking foi- 
ward to Ixing involved in a |x>ssi- 
ble third S TAR I REK feature. "I 
enjoyed this one a great deal," he 
said. ‘The only thing is. I told 
them that foi heaven’s sake if 
they’re going to do another movie, 
let me know ahead of time so I can 
make some ear molds. My wife 
wants hei oven hac k at least every 
other night!” 

ILM EFFECTS 

7 love this work because 
every movie is different, 
and everything stretches 
us and pushes the state of 
the art. ” 

Art Repola, effects editor 

While ken Ralston at II.M 
worked on the two big space kittles 
and the Cleti eel sequence, his 
effects co-supervisor Jim Veilleux 


till about midnight.” he said, 
"then I’d check them over and 
smooth them off and go to hed at 
about one a.in. I had to lx* back at 
tilt* studio at five a.m.” If there was 
a failure, sut h as big hubbies form¬ 
ing in the latex, Keppler would 
have to tool the mold down and 
stait all over. "A t on pie of nights 1 
didn’t get much sleep.” he said. 
“And this went on for IS days 
straight.” 

Leonard Nimoy, kepplei's un¬ 
easy subject, has never made it 
secret that the tedious Spot k 
makeup is not one of his favorite 
pasttimes. Putting on the ears, 
blending the edges, and doing the 
rest of S|xk k’s makeup required 
about 2‘?hours. "It started at five in 
the morning, when no one* is at his 
best, said keppler, who put 
Nimoy at ease* by playing t.qxs of 
classical music, keppler had hc*ard 
that Nimoy liked the* classics. "He 
just sal there and didn’t move,” 
said keppler. “With him lelaxed 
and still. I was able to stieamline 
(he makeup time down to less than 
two hours, riie music benefit ted us 
both. ” 

A soft-spoken, grac ious 52-year- 
old—whose* s|x*e*ch still carriers a 
trace of his native Lei many— 
kepplei has been a makeup aitist 
for more than 36 ye*ars. IIis carerr 
began when he was .1 16-year-old 
apprentice with opera companie*s 
in Germany. After emigrating to 


Canada, them to the* United States, 
keppler landed a job at Pert West- 
more’s makeup sc hool in I lolly- 
wcxxl after reading about West- 
more in a magazine*. During an 
I l-yc*ar stint at Universal, keppler 
worked on everything from JAWS 
to BA ITLESTAR GALACMCA. 

keppler tJc*vclopcd a ne*w makeup 
technique for STAR I REK II. to 
represent the grisly effect of ther¬ 
mal burns on battle victims. "Sev¬ 
eral makeup men. inc luding 
myself, have been experimenting 
with it." he said. Instead of latex, 
cotton and spirit gum, kepplei 
used food processing gelatin, 
applied to actors with a spatula, 
sculpted, and then colored for 
effect. “The advantage* of this 
material is its flexibility," said 
ke ppler. "It moves with the*ac tor’s 
skin and muscles.” The gelatin 
also made* the makeups easy to 
remove, being water soluble. 

I he new burn makeup was used 
foi the* fit si time* on Ike* Kisc*n matin, 
who plays Scotty’s nephew, cadet 
Petei Preston. "It would havebc*en 
very hard on him the old way.’’said 
kepplcr. "since* so much of his 
body was covered with burns. 

I sing latex applianc e's would have 
taken three* to four hours to make 
him up. not to me ntion the* time 
spent taking impressions, and 
making molds and appliances. 
With this gelatin technique the 
whole makeup job took about 15 


minutes. 

keppler also used the tec hniejue 
on Ricardo Montalhan. to repre¬ 
sent Khan’s mortal injuries as lie- 
captains the bridge of the Reliant 
during the film’s c limac tic battle 
scene's. A spurious leport in the 
infamous National Enquirer ac¬ 
cused Keppler (as "the make-up 
man ’) of setting Montalban’s wig 
on fire* while* trying to singe it with 
a candle*. 

" I hat’s not true." said kepplei. 
and Ricaido will bac k me* up. 

I hose wigs won’t bum. They’ll 


did the* re*st of the space shots 
involving the Enterprise and 
supervised shooting during princi- 
pal photography of the live-action 
effects scenes in Vistavision. The 
live-action photography is con¬ 
sidered a "plate" onto which a 
matte* artist and matte photog¬ 
rapher combine* their work into a 
finished shot. Everything but the 
plate of the actors on the set will be 
a painting or some ILM matte* 
de partment trie k. 

Il.M’s matte artists on ST AR 
I REk If were Chris Evans and 
I*rank Orelaz. Evans painted Geti 



Makeup artist Werner Keppler touches-up Khan s (Ricardo Montalban) battle scars 
on the set. Keppler developed an easy-to-apply burn makeup for use in the film. 












The rollbar on the Reliant, a large 
model rigged for repeated explosions. 


Alpha V and two mattes of the 
Genesis Gave, a lush and verdant 
landscape*—after the Genesis device 
worked its miracles. Ordaz did 
seven nebula paintings, pi us one of 
the Genesis Cave. 

On some sjx*c ialeffec ts. Veil leu x 
split the plate photography into 
two pieces for increased control of 
the image. For phase! shots, he’d 
photograph just one actor of a 
group, the one who is going to lx* 
hit. against a portable blue screen. 
The other actors, minus the vie tim, 
are filmed separately on a set. and 
react as if the vie tim was there. The 
victim is insc-rted in the final com- 
posite via a blue screen matte, and 
is the-n made to disap|x*ar as his 
image is first superimposed, then 
dissolved out. all in conjunction 
with rotoscoped artwork of the 
phaser effect. 

II.M shoots all itseffects work in 
Vista Vision, a format developed in 
theearly *50s when motion pic lures 
were trying to fight the inroads of 
television on their audiences by 
presenting an image fidelity and 
scope* that TV screens couldn't 
match. 

VistaVision runs 35mm film 
through the camera horizontally, 
instead of vertically, resulting in a 
frame image* twice as long as nor- 


PHASER DAMAGE results during 
the second meeting between Enterprise 
and the Reliant, the starship Khan has 
commandeered. After surviving a sneak 
attack by Khan, the Enterprise limps 
into a nebula to hide, but the battle 
continues apace developing into a 
tense game of hide and seek. Kirk's 
experience overcomes the superior 
intelligence of Khan and he deals a 
death blow to the Reliant with photon 
torpedoes. To film the shots. ILM's 
model shop, headed by Steve Gawley, 
constructed a large-scale mock-up of 
the diagonal strut that extends down¬ 
ward beneath the main command 
saucer of the Enterprise. The side of the 
mockup to be phaser damaged was 
molded in wax. ILM modelmaker Jeff 
Mann is shown (top right) fitting the 
wax panel into place. Effects co¬ 
supervisor Ken Ralston used sculpting 
tools to animate the phaser damage 
frame by frame, as if the weapon s 
beam were opening-up the hull of the 
Enterprise like a can opener. The heat 
from the shooting lights made the wax 
malleable. Ralston is shown during 
blue screen filming, behind the mockup 
(bottom right), adjusting the incendiary 
lighting effects seen inside the ship’s 
damaged hull. Ralston also lit the 
model with a reddish glow to suggest 
reflected light from the background 
nebula, matted in later. Moving a 
yellowish spot of light along the path of 
the damage as Ralston animated, 
suggested the glow of the fiery explo¬ 
sion. filmed separately and optically 
superimposed to match the rotoscoped 
phaser beam. A large mockup of the 
rollbar across the top of the Reliant 
(left), shown being filmed in front of a 
nebula painting by Frank Ordaz. was a 
breakaway model that could explode 
repeatedly and eject plastic scrap. 

mal 35mm. Since the film stexk is 
still 35mm. it ilcx*s not require the 
s|x*cial l.th processing that /Omni 
does, and can lx* handled with stan¬ 
dard 35mm movieolas and optical 
printers. 

“You need that large format just 
to account lot the image degrada¬ 
tion thatoccursin the optic al print¬ 
er.’* Veilleux said. “You also need 
as high a quality image as possible. 
Since Vistavision is the same field 
size as 35mm. we can use high- 
quality Nikon lenses lot all out 
cameras, and have dozens of lenses 


to give us a great deal of versatility.” 

Because one frame of film con¬ 
tains eight sprocket hole |x*rfora- 
tions. rather than the- normal four 
of 35mm film. VistaVision is also 
referred to as K-jx-tf. The camera 
gcx*s through film at twice the* rate 
of a 35mm camera, since the- film 
gate is twice as long. VistaYision 
film magazines are enormous and 
extremely heavy. 

As is the 100 Ibcatnera. When the 
ca liter a has to lx* moved. pi|x*s are 
run through a se t of flangesoneac h 
side of the camera Ixxlv and at least 
four men pick it up like a sedan 
c hair. “You have to pic k the* thing 
up and set it clown again to make 
even the smallest change of |x»si- 
lion.” Veilleux said. “Nic k [ Meyer) 
was always say ing. 'Oh. let’s get in 
a little* c loser on this shot' and we’d 
think. ‘Nick, you just don't know 
what you’re asking.’ ” 

The enormous weight of a Vista- 
Vision camera doc*s make it very 
steady . In effects work, with I 1000 
of an inch of registration a vital 
necessity. this is an added plus. 1 lie 
camera also runs the* film in a 
steady mannet. 

“Where the- pins lock into the 
film perforation, the fit has to In- 
|x*rfe*e t eac h time*.’’ Veilleuxexplain- 
ed. “or the* image will he jiggling 
around on the film. In a single- 
element piece it would never In- 
notic cable , hut onee you start com- 
bining one piece of film with 


another, such as putting the com¬ 
putet graphics of a space shot 
inside the- viewscreen of the- Enter¬ 
prise. the slighte st jiggle will show 
up 

“We spend a lot of effort try ingto 
design and maintain cameras that 
will reliably keep the film steady,” 
Veilleux continued. “That's one of 
the- things that makes effe*cts work 
so e\|x-nsive. We’ve built cameras 
from scratch, and we've* taken old 
cameras, including some which 
date hac k to the '30s and originally 
ran three-strip Technicolor film, 
replaced the motors and turned 
them into very sophisticated fie ld 
units which are com)xitible with 
some of out computers." 

Veilleux’s crew hxik oxer the 
enormous Ciow Palace, just outside* 
San Franc isco. for the- pyiotec hme s 
work involved in the- space battle 
and the* final Gcne*sis explosion 
which creates a brand ne w planet. 

Thaine* Morris, our pyrotechnics 
man. did that.” said Veilleux. “'Flu* 
work is very technical, to achieve 
the look you want,and Ix-inginside 
the auditorium and not having to 
deal with weather factors made 
things much easier. You have to 
shoot an enormous amount of film 
for such shots. In a week we shot 
35.(MH) feet. Bruce Hill provided a 
sii|x*r high-s|x*e*il camera which 
slowed clown the* action eyot- 
inously. It shexits at 2-KM) frames a 
second.” 


Director Nicholas Meyer (left) rigs Walter Koenig with a wire, as a grip and 
Paul Winfield help, lor the scene where Khan lifts Chekov off the floor with one hand. 





All that footage eventually ends 
up in II .M's effec ts editing depart¬ 
ment. and gets catalogued by Art 
Rqx >la. supervising effects editor 
on STAR I RFk li. A film editor 
ordinarily works in two dimen¬ 
sions. lie splices pieces of film 
together, end to end. to construct a 
story. A visual effects editor works 
vertically, through layers of film. 

“It's editing all tile* elements 
within a shot, creating thee horeog- 
rapln and continuity of the ele¬ 
ments,' Kepola said. "Effects shots 
arc* done in pieces, with each piece 
shot separately. If you have four 
spaceships and a planet and a star- 
field hac kgiound and a laser beam, 
those are each separate pieces of 
film. I'he basic plan of the shot has 
been worked out. hut as far as 
finessing it goes, nuking sure the 
elements are positioned right 
within the* frame, and are the cor¬ 
rect si/e in proportion to the other 
elements, those things are the 
responsibility of the* visual effects 
editors." 

Effects editing is done on a spe¬ 
cial moviola mac him* that can han¬ 
dle ILM’s oversize Vista Vision for¬ 
mat. five layers of film at a time. II a 
shot has more than five elements, it 
is taken in c hunks and Ke|>ola has 
to use* his imagination to visualize 
the sync h. 

One of the most complex shots in 
STAR TREK II. in terms of 
numbet of elements, involves one 


of die ships exploding and pieces 
flying off in every direction. The 
little pieces of debris were shot 
blue-screen as four elements. For 
eac h of those shots.a hurnings|xirk 
element and a flashing light ele¬ 
ment were filmed to mate h. Add to 
that, three explosions, the ship, the 
nebula in the hac kgiound. and the 
stars in the nebula. Eighteen separ¬ 
ate pieces of film were ultimately 
combined h\ Re|x>la fora shotone- 
and-a-half or two seconds long. 

The elements are edited on topof 
each other, to get a pre-composite* 
look at them. Repola starts with the 
hac kground and the main element 
because they will run the whole 
length of the scene* while the other 
pieces physically start and stop 
somewhere within the shot. For 
insLitu c*. a one-ser ntul-lnttg ftluset 
hurst might occui within a four- 
sec ond-long shot. 

Flic* editor then writes it all up 
on an optic al instruction sheet and 
sends it to the* optical printing 
departme nt. Rc*|x>la tells them the* 
timing, where to start and stop 
printing, where to position each 
element and what elements block 
out others in case of cross-overs (a 
ship moving in front of another 
ship or planet). 

"We are essentially the last road 
in the process," said optical pho¬ 
tography supervisor Biticc* Nichoi- 
son. "Wedo thee oui|>ositc‘photog¬ 
raphy; we take all the separate ele¬ 


ments and assemble them on an 
optical printer to make the final 
piec eof film in whic h they all com¬ 
bine. We see* to it that the elements 
are color-balanced to each other, 
that they 're positioned corrcctly in 
the frame and are the proper rela¬ 
tive si/e. and that they don’t have 
any noticeable flaws like* grain or 
soft fex us. If thereareany mistakes, 
we try toe orm t them or make them 
look less noticeable." 

Flu* optical printer used on 
STAR I RFk II was developed foi 
use on the'THE EMPIRE STRIKES 
BA( iK ( -died a quad-head printer 
hec a use it has fom projec tor heads, 
the elec trollies for it werealldoneat 
Il.M and the components, sue h as 
lenses and projectors, purchased 
from the very lx*st people. The 
machine is 10 feet long, l)\ two feet 
wide, plus another five feet on a 
split-axis wing. It weighs roughly 
2500 pounds and. since it has to lx* 
very level and stable, it rests on a 
laser lx*nc h. 

Rc*|x>la. 28.div ided up theefftc Is 
work with Peter Admundson. Rep¬ 
ola edited all the* effects sequences 
done by ken Kulstonand Admund¬ 
son took Jim Veilleux’s work. 
"STAR I RFk was sup|x>scd to 
have been simple work we already 
knew how to do," said Rc*|x>la. 
"< hire we got into it. thisobviousK 
wasn’t the case. New things were 
needed to gel the job done, half the 
facility was working on other 


films, including E.T. and POL¬ 
TERGEIST. Paramount went 
over schedule down at die studio, 
which squeezed us. There’s been 
quite a hit of pressure here at the 
end. But I love this work because 
every movie is different, every shot 
is different, and everything stretc lies 
us and pushes the stale of the art." 

Computer imaging 

“Painting by computer 
is a fantastic experience, 
using a whole new 
technology. I felt honored 
to be the first guinea pig 
to try the system out. ” 
Chris Evans, matte artist 

One of 11.M’s innovations for 
STAR TREK II involved the use of 
computer imaging. Jim Veilleux 
supervised all the various anima¬ 
tion and s|x*c ial computer graph¬ 
ics foi the film. 

Above Veilleux’s desk is a photo 
of two jet fighters taking off from a 
runway hac ked with .1 desert land¬ 
scape and mountains on the 
horizon. The lighting hastheshad- 
owless quality and soft colors of 
dawn light. If Monet had painted 
F-1 (Ms, this is how they would have • 
looked. Except, it isn’t a photo¬ 
graph of two real F-l(Ms. hut of a 

67 






computer simulation. 

Veilleux. 37. got bis start doing 
effects work while in the military 
and worked .it ILM as an effects 
cameraman for THE EMPIRE 
STRIKES BACK. RAIDERS OF 
THE LOST ARK. and POLTER¬ 
GEIST! 

Computer simulation is one of 
Veilleux’s specialities. When a 
ship moves through space in 
STAR I REK II. the star fields are 
not the usual random pin-pricks 
through a hl.uk back-drop. These 
stai fields are "real." with all the 
stars represented in their correct 
colors, magnitudes and relation¬ 
ships. And as the ship goes along, 
every single star stays in its proper 
perspec live. 

That’s just one example of the 
ty|x* of computer graphics that are 
changing the face of s|x*c ialeffec ts. 
Using fast, powerful computers to 
produce images, one of the first 
applications for this type of graph- 
ics was in Might simulators. In lac t. 
the company which produced 
STAR I REK U scomputer graph¬ 
ics (and the photo a hove Veilleux's 
desk) is Evans & Slither land, whose 
principal product is flight simula¬ 
tor graphics. 


But it was one of Evans and 
Sutherland new products that 
caused Veilleux to take notice. The 
Salt luike City based company cre¬ 
ated Digistar. a computer system 
designed to display computer gen¬ 
erated stai fields and graphic 
image's on the domes of planetar i- 
urtis at considerably less expense, 
and with a lot more versatility, 
than building Zeiss optical systems. 

"We used Evans and Suther¬ 
land’s programs after I saw simple 
ways of getting their work on 
film," said Veilleux. "We devel¬ 
oped a very good working relation¬ 
ship with their main programmers 
on the Digistar system, Brent Wat¬ 
son and Steve McAllister. And our 
own computer division used the 
programs they have been working 
ott for two years. 

"The opening shot of STAR 
I REK II. which runs about three 
minutes, is a special star field with 
a data-base of about t>000 stars," 
Veilleux continued. "Notre o! the 
audience may know or cure about 
the accuracy of the field, but the 
overall effect is overwhelming, 
iiiuc h more than could licac hie veil 
by multiple camera passes over a 
piece of artwork." 


FILMING THE BRIDGE of the 
Enterprise as Admiral Kirk (William 
Shatner) and Or. McCoy (DeForest 
Kelley) come aboard to inspect the ship 
during a routine training mission. The 
navigator must duck under the camera 
boom for this pull-back shot Inset: 
Kirk’s old ship is now commanded by 
Captain Spock (Leonard Nimoy). 
showing characteristic Vulcan charm. 

The real innovation that com¬ 
puter graphics tilings to film is the 
ability to produce a wide range of 
motions and dynamics easily and 
c lieaply. Special effects that would 
have been prohibitively expensive 
and involve time-consuming set¬ 
ups and nicks, even with sophisti¬ 
cated equipment like mot ion-con - 
tiol cameras or computerized ani¬ 
mation stands, can lx* done in one 
piece with everything moving in 
|x*rfect perspective, no matter how 
nine h detail is involved. 

II.M’s in-house computer divi¬ 
sion. part of Sprcxket Systems (the 
research and development arm of 
Lucasfilm), has also been working 
on computer graphics for SI AR 
I REK II. Headed by Alvy Ra\ 
Smith and Ijoren (Carpenter.a team 
of computer graphics programmers 
created a demonstration of the 
Genesis terraforming devic e. 

Admiral Kitk has his identity 
c lice ked hv means of a retina sc an. 
and is jx*i milted to watc h a \ ideo- 
tape visual aid explanation of Pioj- 
ect Genesis. The tajx- is somewhat 
similiar to the simulations of pres- 
ent-day spacecraft in planetary 
approaches, but at a far more 
advanced level. 

Tire simulation is from the point 
< >1 view < il a dee|> sjxic e preibc. As the 
probe approaches a dead, airless, 
cratered planet, it files a projec tile, 
lire projec tile hits with a flash of 
light and a slrcxk wave; fire races 
across the surface of the planet, 
melting it and sending up huge 


clouds of gas that eventually 
become an atmosphere. 

File surface c (Mils, then frac tures 
and ripples as mountain ranges, 
the height of Everest, rise up. volca¬ 
noes explode, and other areas sink 
into vast depressions. The mist and 
smoke clear, snow appears on the 
mountain tops. The probe is so 
close to the planet that the curva¬ 
ture of the horizon is lost. At its 
nearest approac h, the probe swoops 
down a long narrow canyon and 
out across a sea beginning to fill 
with water as river channels carve 
the continents. Green appears, 
creeping across the land from the 
water’s edge, as the probe pulls 
away. Finally the probe* flips over 
and looks bat k at the planet, now a 
guru and blue hospitable world. 

The tape lasts a little over bO 
seconds and is created entirely by 
computer representing five months 
work from a 10 man computer 
graphic s team. A total of two-man 
years of effort, were required to get 
those 00 seconds, and the 20 
seconds of Kiik's retina scan, also 
computer generated. 

"The Genesis tape was our 
idea." said Veilleux. "Paramount 
was planning to demonstrate (his 
Genesis effect with a live-action 
sequence, but nolxxly was happy 
with it. I had been trying to con¬ 
vince them to go for computer 
graphics—I used toproduccoeduca¬ 
tional films, and I knew that in 
really complex problems, com¬ 
puter graphics are used to simulate 
what you can’t possibly produce as 
a demonstration—but Paramount 
was concerned about whether it 
would be* dramatic enough. I’d say 
they’re very happy with what they 
got. 

"But in the movie, the Genesis 
ta)x* sort of gcx*s by without Ixing 
presented as remarkable*,’’ added 
Veilleux with a note of irony. "In 
the STAR I REK universe you 
should ex)x*c t that sort of thing." 

At first. Jim Veilleux proposed 
foui seque*nce*s for II .M’scomputer 
imaging divison: two indentifica- 
lion processes, a retina c hec k and a 
voice clu'ck. a computer pro- 
grammed sequence in which Kiik 
sees a crystalline inorganic mole¬ 
cule transformed into a DXA-type 
organic molecule, illustrating the 
Genesis effec t creating lifc.andalso 
a demonstration ol the effect on a 
planetary scale. 

"Originally.that had beenalive- 
action sequence in which a rock 
transforms into a flower, m some¬ 
thing like that," said Alvy Ra\ 
Smith, co-leader along with Loren 
Carpenter ol the computer graph¬ 
ic sprojec t. I le'sa big, rugged-lcHik¬ 
ing man w ith dark brow n hair well 
below his shoulders and a full 
Ixard. At 38. lie's one of the oldest 
people at Lucasfilm—one year 
older that Lucas himself. 

The molcc ule sequcnc e was sup¬ 
plied In Di. Rolx'it Langridgc of 
the University of California af San 
Francisco, "We tried to exploit 


68 



Filming the nebula in a cloud tank at ILM. White latex is injected into an inversion layer ol fresh and salt water, and the resulting shapes are lit with colored gels. 

Brightening Outer Space With Nebula Splendor 

Industrial tight & Magic adds character to outer space by generating a nebula inside a cloud tank. 



current creates storm-cloud shapes 

The effect is difficult to control and 
often the best results are accidental 
Sometimes shapes will last for hours 
and sometimes for minutes. Even the 
heat of the shooting lights create 
currents that change the shapes as 
they're being filmed. “If you see 
something starting to shape up, you 
run around like crazy, because your 
time is short." said Ralston "Don Dow 
Sel Eddy. Mike Owen. Joe Fulmer 
and I would race around quickly 
arranging lights and gels to get 
the maximum effect for each tank." 

Ralston shot the nebula clouds at 
such a slow rate of exposure, about 
one frame per second, that he could 
simply take a light and walk around 
the tank—shining it here and there¬ 
to create discharges of light and 


energy moving through the whole 
nebula, lighting up bits in huge 
flashes To match the lightning in the 
nebula with the ship models. Ralston 
did "lightning passes ' across the 
ship models with a spotlight 
After the nebula cloud photog¬ 
raphy was done, it had to be optically 
combined with the starships, the star 
field, and other optical effects like 
Phaser fire. For optical photography 
supervisor Bruce Nicholson the 
nebula shots were the most difficult 
“And the most dramatic, we hope 
The ships go into a cloud-like mass 
of glowing gas and stars." said 
Nicholson "It is almost like a 
hide-and-seek sequence, in which 
you have the Enterprise and the 
Reliant ducking behind clouds. 


You'll see one disappear behind a 
more solid clump of gas and dust in 
the background while the other ship 
rises up in the foreground We tried 
to expose them so that you see a 
certain amount of nebula across 
them, like a veil of varying density.” 

"The cloud tank is an old 
technique." said Ralston. "I’m pretty 
sure that something like it was used 
in THE TEN COMMANDMENTS to 
create clouds. I'm all for old 
techniques when they work. You can 
waste an awful lot of time trying to 
create the same effect in some new 
way that you think is more high-tech, 
and you can spend a lot of money on 
it. The cloud tank is a very simple 
technique raised to a fine art." 


The nebula as seen 


,he film, during . climactic baffle belween 


the Enterprise and the Reliant. 


"Audiences are going to love the 
finale." art director Michael Minor 
said "The Enterprise leads the 
Reliant into battle in the heart of a 
nebula. We dispensed totally with 
dark space and suddenly we have the 
great billowing clouds of colored 
gasses—cobalt blue, magenta, 
cerise, orange, yellow, green—and 
new born stars, and electrical distur¬ 
bances Through them the ships are 
moving in vast silhouettes, the lights 
twinkling. It's going to be better than 
a cover of an old Amazing Stories I" 

A nebula is a vast multi-colored 
cloud of interstellar gases that's 
slowly condensing into new stars It's 
full of globs of incandescent matter, 
immense discharges of energy and 
small "baby" stars To achieve this 
incredible effect. ILM special effects 
co-supervior Ken Ralston worked 
with a cloud tank, which looks very 
much like a 4 x8' foot aquarium 
In the cloud tank, a layer of salt 
water is laid down over a layer of 
fresh water and the two create a 
turbulent inversion layer 
The "clouds" are a solution of 
latex rubber which ILM technician 
Don Dow carefully injected into 
this layer using meat basters with 
long tubes on them. The latex is 
white, and the colors of the clouds 
are done with lights A little pump 
moves the water very slowly and the 


Optical photography supervisor. 
Bruce Nicholson 


I 


69 













things that |x*ople had Ixrn work¬ 
ing on,” said Veilleux. “Hr had 
worke-d on a computer graphic of a 
very complex DNA molecule for 
years.” 

I'he voice recognition hit went 
by the wayside. Wliic h left just the 
retina scan, and the Genesis rape*. 
The fledgling computer divisional 
Il.M saw the* work as a perfect 
opportunity to get the hugs out of 
their computer systems. 

Said Moore. “The Genesis rape- 
fit into our already-scheduled soft¬ 
ware development plans for tex¬ 
ture-mapping and matting, it 
involved a sphere, whit h is a sim¬ 
ple data-base, and it was planned to 
lx* a videota|x\ with a monitor 
screen matted in. so we would only 
need 500-line resolution. I felt it 
would intnxluce us to the to the rest 
of Lueasfilm.” 

Originally, the Genesis Tape- 
computer demonstration was sup- 
posed to lx* fairly simple. Veilleux 
wanted a /oom-in on the planet, a 
two-dimensional effect to indicate 
the explosion of the planet, a cut to 
live-action reaction shots, and a 
pull-back showing a transformed 
planet. The proposal, however, 
just grew. Given a go-ahead by 
Paramount, individual team- 
tnembers took on diffetent pro¬ 
gramming responsihiities and the 
concept was fine-tuned. As they 
worked on it. thedemota|x*became 
ever more complex and ambitious. 


For instance, instead of just toss¬ 
ing the planet somewhere in the 
galaxy, the team wanted to keep a 
recogni/able constellation in view. 
By obtaining the Vale Blight Stai 
Catalog, they selected the names of 
five nearby stars which may have 
planets (hat could support life. 
The team selected Epsilon Indi. 
because it was determined that the 
Big I)ip|x*i would lx* visible in a 
form not toodistorted from Kill ill’s 
view of it. Furthermore, our sun 
would appear as an extra star in the 
constellation. Loren Carpenter 
named the planet Keti Bandar, the 
city at the mouth of the Indus river, 
where it empties into the Indian 
Ocean. 

In early February, Il.M matte 
artist Chris Evans began using 
II.M’s in-house programming to 
create the final effect of the planet's 
metamorphosis. 

Evans "painted” on a horizontal 
white lioaidin front of a video mon- 
itoi with a light pen. The boatd 
passes its x-y coordinate inlm illa¬ 
tion to the computer, where the 
image is displayed on a video inoni- 
toi fac ing him. Sort of like paint¬ 
ing with numbers instead of by 
numbers. "What they wanted me to 
paint was .1 three dimensional 
sphere of a planet in the process of 
weathering,” Evans said. "First we 
made a Mercator projection of a 
sphere onto the work surfac e. Du n 
I painted the landscape on that 


grid. The computer was pro¬ 
grammed to take my flat painting 
and wrap it around .1 globe. 

"It was a fantastic experience 
using a whole new technology like 
th.it.” Evans continued. "Painting 
systems for computers have been 
around lot a while. Inn as fat as I 
know no one has ever had a profes¬ 
sional aitist use one before; so I felt 
it was a gieat I 101101 to lx* the* first 
guinea pig to try theii system out.” 

After Evans used the piogram for 
awhile his hand-eye coordination 
allowed him indirect his attention 
to the monitor as he painted. His 
work was displayed on the screen 
continually. .10 frames a second. 

Evans wotked closely with com¬ 
puter programmer Tom Porte-r to 
ac tualiy c hange and refine the com¬ 
puter program until it could do 
everything Evans expec ted from a 
hiush with (xiint 011 it. 

"For example.” Evans explained, 
"the* way you can put a stroke down 
and the color will sort of fade*off as 
you pm less pressure on the brush, 
things like that. To make c louds, 
we had to tell the computer how to 
blend brush-strokes.” 

II.M's computer painting sys¬ 
tem consists of a number of pro- 
grams, one foi painting as well as 
sketch, clear, transform, fill, and 
other program applications. An 
at list selects a program off the 
menu board with a stylus. The 
"Sketch” program renders what¬ 


ever you do with the light |x*nasif 11 
were a pencil, "(ilear” allows the 
operator to pick a color and indi¬ 
cate- an area, and the computet will 
change that area to that color. 
"Fill” is similar, but for arbitrarih 
shaped areas. "Transform” allows 
the operator to pic k up a piec e of a 
pic tureand manipulate it. lot.itc-it. 
scale it up or down, move it around, 
a son of c ut-and-paste c a|xibility. 

Once a piogram is selected off 
the menu board, a swipe of the pen 
to the 1 ight side puts the cursor, the 
|x>int of light, on the main monitor 
screen. A downward swi|x- of the 
|x*n instruc ts the computer to dis¬ 
play a color palette*. Only about 200 
colors are presented, but a million 
others are available, or a color can 
lx- selected off the painting and the 
computer will apply that color 
where indicated. 

"The program is set up so that a 
regular artist can, with a fairly 
understandable set of tools, either 
create his own pic turesor tout h up 
the kind of pic tures wee an c reate,” 
computer programmer Tom Pot¬ 
ter said. "For instance, here's a fine 
planet surface, but we didn't pro¬ 
vide any clouds Ix-cause c louds arc* 
a diffic nil subjet t to animate. So if 
you want to tone h it up .1 little with 
clouds, you get an artist over here¬ 
from Il.M.” 

The* Gene-sis Tape sequence was 
filme-d in March, by a film crew 
from Il.M next door, using an 


70 












Lmpitcflex Vista Vision camera. 
Computer programmer Rob Poor’s 
retinas were photographed lot the 
retina scan sequence. “Actually, 
four oi us had out retinas photo- 
graphed.'' Smith said, “hut Roll’s 
were the most interesting." 

Fite identilic at ion process 
thought uploi S I AR I REKIIxvas 
to move* a vein template around in 
some intetesting wax until a 
pattern match occulted lietween 
the veins in the iiersotfstciinasand 
on the template. at which |m> int 
some appropriate lettering and 
graphic s would ap|>eai. indie aling 
a fxisitixc* indent it ic at ion. 

"What we’re* heading lot is lull- 
resolution movie theatei cpialux 
images." said Smith. "We were 
hind h\ Luc as essentially to hung 
the* computet into lilmmaking in 
any wax xvecan thinkol. Theattac k 
points aie audio, in the* form ol 
digital audio prexessers; in video- 
ta|x* editing, and m making pic - 
lilies with the computet. Rut it’s 
just not hap|x*nmg last enough to 
suit us. We’re building tools that 
eventually II M xvill use* to make 
movies.’’ 

Ed Catmull is diiectoi ol com- 
putei leseaic h at I arc aslilin. and he* 
thinks then* is a |x>ssibility that 
even more sophistic .tied computer 
el lei is xvill Ik* team red in the forth- 

eoming REVENGE OF INI 
JEDI 

On theollicexvallsol RoscDmg- 


nan. ILM’s pic duct ion supervisor 
for STAR I REK II are blankets of 
(ix8 photoc opies of S TAR I RI.KII 
storyboards. Most have “Einished" 
wiitteii ac toss them in felt-tip ink. 
"On this movie, we did the most 
number ol shots in the* shortest 
lime that has lxx*n done here oi 
elsexvhere." said Duignan with a 
somexvh.it tiled pride. 

I he original STAR I REK had 
so much more time and so much 
moie money and so many more 
|x*ople involved," she continued. 
"We basic ally did the entire film in 
le ss than six months. I he |x*ople 
hetexvoik sohlcxxly hard. And they 
c irate mote work lot themselves. 
I‘here might lx* an element that’s 
ok.ix—tlu* prcxlucer xvill buy it — 
hut tlu* camera |x*ople and anima- 
lots and optical |x*ople will say. 
No. wecantloit belter.' That’sjust 
not I loll\ xvcxkI." 

Despite hisc litic ism of iheEnter- 
pi isc*, ken Ralston lex>ks fondly at a 
pic tureol the*shipcoin|x»si(c*d into 
II.M's hackgiound nebula. “Do I 
tall in love with these moviesas Ido 
them?*’ lie asks, rhcioiically. "l T su- 
allx 1 fallou/of love withthem, f lic* 
planning is fun. hut the* doing is 
haul xvoik. It tends to absorb youi 
life*. I notice I te nd to date events 
actotding to what I was xvoiking 
on at the lime. I got married during 
DRAGONSLAYER. lot instance. 
Hut x\ hen the* xvoi k is clone and you 
se t* it up on the sc teen, and all that 


THE GENESIS CAVE is a resplen¬ 
dent example ot the miraculous terra¬ 
forming capabilities of Project Genesis. 
The project's scientific director. Dr. 
Carol Marcus (Bibi Besch) leads Captain 
Kirk (William Shatner) out onto a 
promontory to view the cave s 
wonders (top left). The live-action 
portion of this ILM matte shot was 
filmed on a small set at Paramount (top 
right). The ragged shell-like walls repre¬ 
sent the lava-bubbled interior of the 
cave, a concept for the scene devised 
by production designer Joseph Jennings 
and art director Michael Minor. The 
bubble set’s shell (bottom right) was 
made out of molded fiberglass by a 
company that manufactures domed 
swimming pool covers, and was 
reinforced with a skeleton of metal and 
wood, then carved and painted. The 
live-acton element of the scene was 
turned over to ILM matte painter Chris 
Evans. Evans carried forth the bubbled 
shell motif, adding lush vegetation and 
a moving waterlall. Two separate matte 
paintings were used to create the final 
effect. On the main painting Evans left 
the area of the waterfall black. On a 
separate painting Evans rendered the 
waterfall and etched clear channels 
where moving water would appear. The 
apparent movement of the cascading 
water is created by a rotating cotton 
wheel placed behind the clear channels. 
The subtlety and quality of the effect is 
especially dependent upon matte 
photographers Neil Krepela and assist¬ 
ant Craig Barron, who shot the paint¬ 
ings in multiple passes with diffusion 
filters. Designs for other mattes include 
Kirk's point-of-view (bottom left) of the 
cave lit by an artificial sun. painted by 
Evans, and a grandiose pull-back from 
the shot above (bottom middle) painted 
by concept artist Mike Pangrazio. 

xvoik (xiysoli . .. yeah, I kill in love* 
xvitli ihr uioxit* all over again." 

(>ii tlu*l.u wall ol ILM’smoviola 
loom is a huge hl.uk anil while 
photo mural of a gentlemen in a 
business suit, editing hxitage hy 
means ol sc is so is and a light hull). 
It's Sergei Eisenstein. and it's been 
saul you can tell, in the enlarge- 
meni. that the film he's xvorkingon 
is (tom IVAN HIE TERRIBLE. 
Eiseiistein pioneered film aesthet¬ 
ics and editing techniques. II he* 
could sec what’s going on at ILM 
undei his x isage. he’d lx* pleased. 



Matte painter Chris Evans. 


The score 

“Director Nick Meyer 
wanted to give the film 
the feel of an adventure 
on the high seas. It’s that 
kind of nautical, wind¬ 
blowing spirit I 'm after. ” 
James llorner, composer 

Ilu- makers ol STAR IRIK II 
xvanted a rousing oic h extra I musi¬ 
cal score in tlu* best adventure him 
traditions ol Erich komgold and 
recent imitators such as John Wil¬ 
liams. (>>tii|x)sci James llorner 
xvas approached xvitli the* assign¬ 
ment In Jcx’l Sill, vice-president of 
music lot the motion pic tun* div i- 
sion of Paramount, and xvas intto- 
duced to exec utivc ptcxlucei 1 larve 
Bennett, ptcxlucei Rohcit Salim, 
and director Nicholas Meyer. 
I lorticr agreed xvitli that approac h 
and started com|x>sing in mid- 
January. 

"There is a tendenc y to want to 
compare scores of big outer space 
movies," said llorner. "like* John 
Williams’ music foi STAR WARS 
and THE EMPIRE STRIKES 
BACK and Jerry Goldsmith's foi 
the first STAR I REK film. There 
xvill lx* similarities, of course*. Tot 


Mr. Scott (James Doohan) holds the limp form of his nephew (Ike Eisenmann), 
killed in a devastating phaser attack when Khan opens fire on the Enterprise. 

















one thing, ii you close your eyes 
and play STAR WARS and my 
STAR I'RKKscore, the first notion 
that will come to your mind is that 
the same instruments are playing. 
Williams created a trend in music 
lor space movies with STAR 
WARS because that was the* first 
hig space movie to come along in 
quite awhile. But that style of scor¬ 
ing is very old-fashioned. It works 
well, whether you’re on a train or a 
pirate galleon or in deep space. 
That kind of approach is very tac¬ 
tile. It’s easy to use it to manipulate 
emotions." 

The 28-year-old Horner, has 
turned out a piolific amount of 
film scores in the |>ast two and a 
half years. Starting with small 
films for the AFI. he graduated to 
doing "schlocky films fot Roger 
Gorman," including HIJMAN- 
OIOS OK I I IK DEEP. UP I ROM 
THE DEPTHS. BATTLE BE¬ 
YOND THE S I ARS, and others. 
“It’s hard to keep track," he 
laughed, "because Roger changes 
the titles, il films don’t preview 
well, to sort of erase the word-of- 
mouth.** Othei credits include 
IIIK PI RSI TrOK D.B.(:< M >PER. 
WOLFEN, DEADLY BLESSING, 
and THE HAND. 

Horner com|)osed alrout 70 mm- 
utesof music for S EAR I REK II m 
five weeks. A lot of music fora film 
that, as of the latest cut. is 129min- 
cites long. "The last three reels are 
almost wall-to-wall music," he 
said, "inc hiding some tremendous 
battle scenes." Horner utilized a 
90-piece full symphony orchestra 
for the scoring sessions, which 
lasted five days. 

Director Nicholas Meyer, who 
comes from a family of profes¬ 
sional music ians and is not had on 
the liatiered grand piano that sits in 
his living room. worked closely 
with Horner. In fact, Horner c red¬ 
its Meyet with a lot of input on his 
com|x>sition of the score. 

“I le and I talked about it at great 
length," said Homer. "Wespentso 
muc h time together on this project 
that we’ve become rather close 


THE CETI EEL is the only remaining 
indigenous form ot lite on desert planet 
Cell Alpha V. where Commander 
Chekov (Walter Koenig) and Captain 
Terrell (Paul Wintield) stumble upon 
Khan and his crew ot genetic supermen. 

marooned there years earlier by 
Captain Kirk. When Chekov and Terrell 
decline to reveal Kirk s whereabouts. 
Khan introduces them to the eel, the 
larva of which burrow into a host s ear. 
boring its way into the brain and 
wrapping itself around the central 
cortex. The nasty experience makes 
Chekov and Terrell more susceptible to 
answering Khan s questions. ILM 
special effects co-supervisor Ken 
Ralston designed the mother eel. about 
14" long, to have a leathery, tough 
shell. The larva, more eel-like in 
appearance, hide underneath the 
plating, on the mother’s back. The 
mother eels are kept by Khan, inside a 
terranium (shown left). Rods, extend¬ 
ing up through the base of the 
terranium and into the tail section of 
the model, allowed Ralston to manipu¬ 
late the model to thrash around in the 
sandy soil. A mechanism worked the 
jaws. For a shot of the fully grown eel 
emerging from Chekov’s ear. Ralston 
re-used the large eel model along with 
an oversized mock-up of Chekov’s ear 
which Ralston sculpted from a cast of 
Koenig's own ear. Ralston is shown 
(right) manipulating the model from 
behind the mockup for a bloody 
close-up shot. For the larva, not 
shown. Ralston used foam rubber 
worms pulled off-camera by special 
effects assistant Sel Eddy, using a 
monofilament line. The legless larva 
models were cut in the middle so that 
the front half, pulled by the line, pulled 
the back half in a kind of inchworm 
motion when covered with sticky goo. 

friends. Nic k knows what lie ’s Hik¬ 
ing about, musically. 1le wanted to 
give the lilm the* feeling e>l an 
adventure on the high seas. It 's that 
sort of nautical, under-sail, wind¬ 
blowing spit it that I’m after, as 
op|x>sed to STAR WARS’ very 
ini|x*rial, martial kind of theme. 

"I could do something very 
avant garde anel very atonal," con- 
tinued I lorner, “sue has Tangerine 
Dream's scores for SORCERER 
and THIEF, anel my own score lot 
WOLFEN. But 1 have tosortof ten* 
a line. There are < ertain givens in a 


Filming STAR TREK II s final scene in Golden Gate park in Los Angeles. Spock s 
casket, a photon torpedo casing, comes to rest on the newly formed Genesis planet. 




movie like S EAR I REK. I lie set¬ 
ting. the plot, (he characters, all 
demand a certain approach. II I 
tric*d to do something more avantc 
garde I would not only upset my 
producers. I would probably do 
iiann to the film itself. I have to 
work pretty straightforwardly 
with tlu* s< eneelements, but I don't 
sink it on the nose Uni much, or 
hype the ac tion. An audience will 
tesist that kind of manipulation. 

Part of Horner’s score is com¬ 
posed of charactci themes for Ixitli 
Mr. S|xxk and Khan. “S|xKk’s 
motif is a very haunting theme," 
said I loi net. “very different from 
anything else* in the film, but done 
with conventional instruments. It 
emphasizes his humanness mote 
than his alietmess. By putting a 
theme over S|>ock. it warms him 
and In* becomes three-dimensional 
rather than a college lion of sell tic ks." 

Kor tlu* complex character of 
Khan, the genetically-engineered 
superman liom the* 20th century. 
Horner piovides what he calls an 
orchestral texture. “It's sort of a 
mcnac mg undertone," said I lorner. 
“very quiet music that underplays 
his insaiiit\ in a subtle way that 
will have a disquieting effee ton the 
audience. When lie’s involved in 
battles, the* music is wild and 
pagan. A lot is going on in this 
movie, and by means of music you 
can help the* story along. You can 
represent how c liarac let s feel about 


each other in an instant by using a 
bristling theme ot a friendship 
theme. We do that with Khan. You 
know lie's crazy the moment you 
sec* him. but you don't know why 
you feel that way." 

1 lot tier's most overt theme is for 
the* terraforming Genesis Effect 
that transforms barren (lamina 
Regula into a resplendant paia- 
dise. “It’snot theswellingdawn-of- 
ereation. Stiavinsky-violins theme 
you might ex|x*ct," said Horner. 
“It's kind oi awe-inspiring. There 
are large sustained orchestral 
chords which slowly and almost 
im|M‘tceptihly change, rhe closest 
comparision I could give you 
would piobabK In* certain |xis- 
sages in 2001. It ’s got a nice texture, 
but we’re not in it lot all that long." 

Homer enjoys doing music fot 
science fictioti and horror movies 
Ik*c ause lie* gets more chances to 
stretch himself creatively, but like* 
most people in the entertainment 
business, lie worries about becom¬ 
ing type-cast. “I get worried some¬ 
times, that I'm lx mg locked into 
Ix ing a horror movie composer," 
he said. I was doing horror movie 
after horror movie because that’s 
all I was Ix'ing asked to do. And 
whenever Ed try to get some other 
sott of work they’d say 'Yeah, you 
just did WOl.KEN and that was 
terrific, but. you know, this is a 
sensitive stoi\. We’ll get Dave 
Grusin. ”’ 1 HE PURSUIT OK 





1) K COOPER hel|xd Horner 
lm*ak the stercot\|x* and he's look 
itit* forward lo having S FAR 
IK Ik II o|M‘ii up oilier creative 
doors. 

HE’S DEAD, JIM 

“The studio did not 
generate any of the 
rumors about Spock s 
death. Early drafts of the 
seript were stolen, and 
that fueled the Juror. ” 
Robert Sallin, producer 

Principal photography with die 
main ac lots began on Noveinlier 
1981 ai (hr Parainouni Studios in 
Hollywood. Prodtic lion ended 
January 2*1. 1*182. a few days over 
schedule and slightly over budget, 
a rather remarkable feat lot a pro- 
duc lion of S I AR I Rl-.k I I s scope. 

From the beginning, the film 
was marked h\ keen interest from 
fans, seemingly fed by rumors that 
Spark had been killed oil in die 
script. I he fans res|jondetl with a 
huge advertisement campaign in 
head oil the Fits! Officer’s demise*. 
They took out lull page ads in 
Variety and other magazines and 
formed pressure* groups to voice 
then displeasure. 

There was considerable s|k*c illa¬ 


tion that publicity “leaks” alroul 
Spoe k's death were deliberately 
planted to stir up 1 tekkies and 
media attention lot the film. Suc h 
suspic ions were exacerbated when 
the FV news magazine EN FFR- 
lAINMENF FOMOIII {also 
prcxlur(*d h\ Paramount) ran a call- 
in viewer |x>ll on (lie subject of 
whether Spoc k should |x*nsh oi lx 
spaied. and when it cemductcd 
three-days worth of interviews on 
the budge set of the Enterprise. 

“ Fhe studio did not genc*rateany 
ol the* tumors about Spoek’s 
dc*ath.“ said producer Rolxrt Sal¬ 
lin. "People have assumed that 
when this movie was conceived the 
fiist thing tlu* studiodid was to run 
out and create the* rumors that 
S|xn k was going to die*, to get the* 
I tekkies ext ited and generate pub¬ 
lic it\. I hat is contrary to my 
knowledge. I know that the* fxrsi- 
tiou ol the studio brass is that they 
would just as sex>u nolxxlv said 
anything. Early drafts of the sc ript 
were stolen and made their way 
into the hands ol fans, and that 
fueled the furot.” 

Jjowru*; /he rumors wne p/o- 
mitigated, in the* final analysis 
S|xh k did die, so at least the con¬ 
cern on the* part of the* fans was not 
completely wasted on cynical 
manipulation. What constitutes 
Death is a matter of semantic sand 
debate even now, let alone in the 
23rd century. "In science fiction 


tlieie arc* many kinds of life*, and 
many kinds of death." Sallin said. 

While II.M finished the s|x*cial 
effec ts work. Paramount lx*gan to 
lilt the* film’s veil of secrecy in an 
effort to public i/e its forthc oniing 
telease. Public statements h\ diiec - 
lot Nic holas Meyer led to some I tic- 
lion' on the* pnxluc tion. however. 
Prixlucer Rolx-ti Sallin tcx>kexcep¬ 
tion to off-hand remarks made by 
Meyet in out last issue (12:1:11) 
which characterized the ongoing 
effects work as being somewhat 
disorganized. 

“I don’t believe in taking c redit 
lot other people’s work and I don’t 
Ixlieve in making myself seem 
more iiii|x>iian( at other |x*ople’s 
expense." said Sallin. "Nick did 
not sii|x*ivisc* the* creation of the 
effects storyboards, and Nick did 
not sti|x*i\ise the* execution of the 
shots, lie* attended otic* meeting 
with meat II .M.at w hie h time I ran 
through every fiamc* of every shot, 
and that was it. lie* was over¬ 
whelmed with the s|x*cial effects 
and just hac ked away from them. 

"I resent Meyer saying about tlie* 
elicits, ‘Ur didn't ktt<n< wlut tee 
were doing ... ”’ Sallin c ontinued. 

"Hr might not have known what 
he was doing, hut we knew exac ll> 
what we were doing. //<* was con¬ 
fused and intimidated because the* 
effects work was highly technical 
and required a sense* of visualiza¬ 
tion. and—as he says—he knows 


nothing about s|x*cial effects. The 
implication is that therewasconfu- 
sion. and then* was noconfusion at 
all. If there had !x*en any confusion 
wecould not havecome in soc lose* 
to budget.” (Meyer was contac ted 
lot comment, but never returned 
out calls.) 

In another interesting develop¬ 
ment. Judson Sc ott. who plays Joa¬ 
chim, Khan's right-hand man, 
requested that his name lx* removetl 
ftotti thee retlitsof S FAR I RFK II. 
Apparently the actor’s advisors 
convinced him that .ifte*r playing 
the* lead in the* short-run FV seties 
FHE PHOENIX, he is a Star and 
smaller tole*s. however strong and 
memorable, are beneath him. 

Dining final editing, just prior 
to release, two human-interest sub¬ 
plots were drop|x*d to pie k up the 
film’s pace*. One* ehop)x*d scene 
involved Seottv’s young nephew, 
Peter Preston, who dies while 
working in the engine room. The 
se ene establishing Preston as Sc ot- 
ty’s nephew also went by the way- 
side*. le*av mg the exac l basis of Se ot- 
ty's affectionate attachment to the 
voting mart rather ofx-n to interpre¬ 
tation. Another excised scene 
involved a somewhat unlikely 
romance* between knk’s hot-tem- 
|x*te*d son. David Marcus, and the 
su|x'tc ilious Ft. Saavik. 

Directoi Nicholas Meyet watt 
pleased with his cut of STAR 
I RFK II. Fraditionally. the* first 

73 

















editing of a film isdoneat thedirec- 
tor’s order, hut may Ik- amended or 
recut later, at the discretion of 
producers or studio. Meyer's cut 
was tightened somewhat, accord¬ 
ing to producer Robert Salim. “We 
had too much plot, essentially,” he 
said. “Xic k’s bac kground is that of 
a writer, and in bis version there 
was an extraordinary amount of 
exposition that we didn't feel was 
totally necessary; so Ilarve Bennett 
and I made some changes, in 
response to notes from thestudio.lt 
had to do with the tem|M> of the 
film. What we have is essentially 
the same picture as the director’s 
cut.” 

It’s hard to determine whether 
Meyer was pleased with the*rev isions 
made on his cut. lie's not talking 
much about STAR TREK these 
days, other than to make it known 
that he is unhappy about the title 
and to say that, contrary to rumors 
and implications, no alternative 
endings to the film were shot or 
contemplated. 

Meyer reportedly hates the 
subtitle, II IE WRATI1 OFkl IAN. 
saying it is trashy and foolish- 
sounding. I le had always preferred 
the original subtitle. THE UNDIS¬ 


COVERED COUNTRY, but had 
hern aware for months that the 
studio didn't care for it and 
planned to change it before the* 
movie was released. 

In lc*tte*rs to movie industry trade 
papers and the Los Angeles Times 
and Herald Examiner in mid-May, 
Meyer disputed the idea that fans 
had any influence on the ultimate 
ciiding of the film. Afte*r a screen¬ 
ing at a science fic tion convention 
in Kansas on May 8. a high-placed 
Paramount official indicated that 
other endings had Urn considered. 
)xt haps filmed, and that the one 
used would dc‘|XTidon fan reac lion. 
Meyer denies multiple endings 
were shot, adds that none were 
written, and that the* outcome of 
the story was never mutable*. 

As far as can lx* determined. 
S|xx k always died, in every version 
of the* script and every* cut of the 
film. Additional scenes involving 
Spcx k’s death were shot by an ILM 
crew*, with Kobc*rt Sallin. at San 
Francisco's Golden Gate Park in 
late April, more than two months 
after principal photography wrap¬ 
ped, when the movie was. for all 
intents and purposes, complete. 
The scenes show Sjxxk’s casket, a 


RICARDO MONTALBAN as Khan, 
dresses down his second-in-command. 
Joachim, played by Judson Scott. 
Montalban created the role, one of the 
series most memorable, when cast for 
the episode "Space Seed." in a pari 
originally written to be a Scandanavian 
called Thorwald. Inset: Montalban s 
monomaniacal superman runs hot and 
cold, here embracing dead Joachim. 

photon tor(xdo casing, drifting 
after bis burial in s(xice*. finally 
coming to test on the* planet cmitcd 
by the* explosion of the* Gc*nc*sis 
device* aboard Khan's ship. 

In the* original ending, Sfxxk's 
casket was simply se*t adrift in 
space. These extra scenes were 
filmed afte*t the* results of opinion 
screenings before care*fully-se- 
lec ted demographic ally-balanced 
audic*ncc*s. 

The implication and promise of 
the* new ending are obvious— 
S|xx k’s remains are safe and sound 
and just await tlx* next movie*, 
when it will ex cur to soinc*one to 
use* the* Genesis device to restore 
him to life*. Indcrd. the* title of the* 
next S EAR 1 REK. whic h may go 
into picxluc lion asearlv as Novem¬ 
ber .is I IIESEARCilIE<)RSP<X:k. 

In February. Meyer saiel he* was 
not interested in being involved 
with any future STAR I REK. “I 
don’t like* to elo the same* thing 
over,” he saiel. Meyer wrote two 
Sherlock Holmes novels because 
"they backed up a truck with so 
much money* in it” lx* couldn’t 
refuse*. 

Most of the* other artists anel 
technicians who made* STAR 
I REK II expressed enthusiasm for 
being involved with a followup. 
Even Leonard Nimoy looks forward 
to re prising his role as S|xx k in a 
third movie. From all re|x>rts. 
Nimoy was happy with the material 
lie* bad to work with this time*. I his 


is in marked contrast to Nimoy's 
usual altitude towards the charac¬ 
ter that made him famous. 

Nimoy* s|x*nt most of the* 12years 
after the cancellation of the* series 
trying to disavow Sjxx k. I le wrote 
a IxHik called / Am Not Sfmck and 
has lx*c*n widely quoted as saying 
that when he* was fitst approac heel 
to play s | m m k in MAR I REK— 
THE MOTION PICTURE, his 
reaction was to throw up. Nimoy 
also alle*ge*dlv resisted the* first 
offe rs foi S I AR I REK II Despite 
bis much-public i/cd hatred of the 
character, be* always capitulates 
when enough money is offered 
only to start bad-mouthing Spock 
again as scx>n as thee hec kc learsthe 
bank. 

Since S I AR I REK U s Gene-sis 
device can change one form of 
matter to another, as long as the 
tight cont|x>nc*nt atoms are*present, 
it obviously isn't ne*ce*ssary in the 
next film tobringS|xx k bac ktolife 
in pic*cisc*ly the* form we last saw 
him. In fact, that would lx* rather 
|x>intlc*ss. sine e at that time he was 
a man dying of radiation poision- 
ing. It would lx*.i dc lie ions irony if 
theresurree tcdS|xx k was not quite 
as he had been, and was |x*rhaps 
younger and played by a different 
actor. Not a likely pros|x*ct. but 
|x*rhaps a tempting one* lot the 
Paramount brass. 

Dead ot not, the sc ript plays fair 
with S|xx k. It may lx* harsh to say 
he’s an emotional vampire, but he 
dcx*s seem to enjoy ge tting people, 
notably McCoy, into an apople*ctic 
state*. At the le*ast. Spock's an 
emotion addict. Why else* would 
the* half human half v tile an c hoose 
tospc‘ttd bis life*among pc*oplc*who 
are not bis intellectual c*c]uals, 
e*xce*pt to Ire* in the* presence of the 
emotion they slop arounel so 
freely? 

Among purt*-bred Vulcans, as 
se*e*n on the* series, S|xxk is embar¬ 
rassingly hy |x*rac live and me re ur- 
ial. Vulc an standards of rt*prc*ssion 
approach the |x>int of catatonia. 
Spcx k is wasting bis life*, by Vulcan 
sfanelards, too, slumming with 
human Ixings. Dealing with the* 
character logically — how else, 
indcrcl?—we* knew that sckhict or 
late*r his weakness of beingcapable 
to love and form friendships and 
attachments was going to lx* the 
death of him. 

If SI AR I REK II becomes an 
attistic. commercial, and critical 
success, it will lx* to the* credit of a 
gre at many |x*ople*at every echelon 
who brought their talents to bear, 
only a few of which have hern 
showcased he re*. It will also lx* a 
cic elit to the fans of S EAR I REK, 
whose devotion almost literally 
willed this movie into existence. 
It's an ele gant equation that S(xn k 
wouldappre-c iate: the* show created 
the* fans, and in turn the fans 
created the* show. Now, to use* the* 
favorite phrase of l'rekkic*s evtfry- 
where, may it “I.ive long and 
prosper." □ 


v<* 


74 





STAR TREK I: "Space Seed” 

STAR TREK II: THE WRATH OF KHAN is 
a sequel to one of the TV-series ’finest episodes. 


Skirting the disaster of STAR TREK— 
THE MOTION PICTURE, the makers 
of STAR TREK-II wrote it as a follow¬ 
up instead to one of the classic first 
season episodes of the STAR TREK 
television series. "Space Seed " First 
telecast in February 1967. the episode 
was written by Carey Wilber and 
series producer Gene L. Coon, a figure 
credited by knowledgeable fans as "the 
true genius behind STAR TREK." 

In the episode, the Enterprise picks 
up a distress signal which ship’s 
computers identify as an SOS in 
long-disused morse code. At its 
source, the Enterprise finds a space 
derelict, shown on the ship’s main 
viewing screen (top right) 

Boarding the derelict. Kirk and crew 
find some 80 crewmen in suspended 
animation and revive the ship's leader 
(Ricardo Montalban). a superb physical 
specimen, when his sleeper unit 
begins to malfunction. His life saved 
by Dr. McCoy. Montalban is inter¬ 
viewed by Kirk. (William Shatner) in sick 
bay (second right), but evades Kirk's 
questions, claiming to be fatigued. 

At dinner, given in his honor (third 
right). Montalban explains to Kirk that 
his ship is the SS Botany Bay. an 
atomic powered vessel that left Earth at 
sub-light speeds in 1998. headed for 
Ceti Alpha 5. The dinner breaks up 
after a bristling exchange between 
Montalban and Mr. Spock (Leonard 
Nimoy). who bluntly questions his 
story and motives. Ship's historian 
Marla McGivers (Madlyn Rhue) and 
Uhuru (Nichelle Nichols) look on. 

Spock, with the aid of ship's comput¬ 
ers. correctly deduces that Montalban 
is in reality Khan Noonian Singh, a 
genetically selected superman and the 
despotic instigator of Earth's Eugenics 
Wars, who vanished without a trace 
after his defeat Kirk confines Khan to 
his quarters and proceeds to tow the 
Botany Bay to Star Base 12 for further 
disposition. Khan escapes and. after 


seducing historian McGivers to his 
cause, beams aboard the Botany Bay. 
revives his crew, and proceeds to take 
over the Enterprise 

Khan sentences Kirk and Mr. Spock 
to death inside an Enterprise decom¬ 
pression chamber, for refusing to 
accept his command, and warns Mr 
Scott (James Doohan). Uhuraand Dr. 
McCoy (DeForest Kelley) that they 
could be next (bottom right) McGivers 
is shocked by Khan's ruthlessness and 
betrays him to save the lives of Kirk 
and Spock. who lead a force to retake 
the ship. 

Given authority by Star Fleet 
Command. Kirk convenes a special 
Court Martial to mete out justice to 
Khan and his men. Kirk offers Khan a 
choice: to be marooned on Ceti Alpha 
V with a minimum of survival equip* 
ment to scratch out a bare subsistence 
on the rugged, inhospitable planet, or 
be sentenced to a penal planet for 
rehabilitation. 

"Have you ever read Milton. 
Captain?" asks Khan defiantly. 

"I have." Kirk replies 

"Then you'll remember what it was 
that Lucifer said after his fall into the 
pit." 

Kirk understands. McGivers, given 
the choice of her own court martial or 
sharing Khan's punishment, chooses 
to be marooned with her lover "We've 
got what I wanted after all," Khan says, 
taking her hand."... a world to 
conquer." 

On the bridge, as the Enterprise 
warps out of orbit around Ceti Alpha V. 
Mr. Scott turns to Kirk, confesses he's 
not up on his Milton despite being a 
good Scotsman, and asks what Lucifer 
said. "He said ..." Kirk pauses, "better 
to rule in Hell than to serve in Heaven " 

Adds ever-thoughtful Mr. Spock, “It 
would be interesting to come back to 
Ceti Alpha V in a hundred years and 
see what crop has sprung from the 
seed we’ve planted today " 


Filming blue screen the 14-foot Enterprise model, as it tows Khan’s ship, the SS 
Botany Bay. The model was donated to the Smithsonian after the series left the air. 















Jonathan Pryce gives free tickets to Shawn Carson and Vidal I. Peterson. 


§0methin£ kicked TkislSay Gemes 

Director Jack Clayton won’t "Disneyize” Bradbury’s horror classic. 



Jack Clayton directs Jason Robards. who plays a library nightwatchman. 


by Stephen Rebello 

At Disney Studios these days, one 
can't help hut feel the hulking 
shadow looming over Never-Never 
Land. The liest efforts of the studio’s 
New Guard in goosing up the hland 
and squeaky Disney image (DRAG- 
ONSLAYER. WATCHER IN THE 
WC)()DS, NIGHTCRCXSSIN(;) have 
all met with critic aland (inane iaT’So 
what’s?" On the upside, however, is 
one of the* more ambitious and prom- 
ising products m the studio s pijx*- 
line. the Sl. r > million version o( Rax 
Bradbury's SOME I IUN(. WICKED 
ITUS WAY GOMES. 

Produced by Peter Douglas (see 
I 2 :I:M), who prcKluced EHE FINAL 
COUNTDOWN. Bradbury’s wispy 
honor (able* ol a dark carnival (111*11*11 
by human misery and greed will 
(lit kerat ross movie screens in Det em¬ 
ber. Once again, the studio is pulling 
very hard for it being f/irfilm they can 
take to the hank. 

Considering the off-kilter talent 
involved In-hind and lx*fore the tarn- 
era, the film gives cause for consider¬ 
able optimism I11 the pivotal |*>si- 
lion is a maverick English director 
who tends to make lilms only when 
he (alls in love with the material. }at k 
Clayton (ROOM AT THE I*C)P. 
I HE INXOCEN I S) has been con¬ 
nected with SOME HUNT. WICKED 
THIS WAY COMES lot six years, 
and if his enthusiasm has waned, one 
couldn't read it in the his latger-ihan- 
life. Die kensian ap|x*arance. 

“It’s true I seldom make films," 
Clayton admitted. "I don’t seem to 
find material that I like all that often 
and I won’t work unless I do. I wrote 
an initial version of these reenplav (01 
SOMETHING WICKED ITUS WAY 
COMES with Bradbury* six years ago. 
I-ist year. I rewrote the sciipt—liasi- 
cally on inv own—with a totally new 
slant, hut int hiding a lot ol the old 
material. Usually, when you come 
hack 10 a project after such a long 
(M-iiodof time, you either hateitor are 


otii ol love with 11. 1 hai is always a 
ilanger. Bui I still liked 11 very much 
and wanted to do it." 

Clavion is an enormously percep- 
live, kindlx man. whose* demeanor 
In-lies a It-gentian short fuse. Once 
rc-puted to have worn a knife sirap|K*tl 
10 his knee at all times. Clayton made- 
headlines years ago foi smashing thi¬ 
ol I it e window ol a Pat amount exec u- 
tive Ehe hone of lontention was 
Clavion’s sciipt loi SOM I* I HINT. 
WICKED ITUS WAY COMES. 

I have an extremely violent 
iem|H*r." lie said, “hill it’s rare dial ii 
c01 lies forth. lt\ only provoked In 
at uie irtiiation ot finds. I lit- little 
'window effort’ tame alx >111 because 1 
had worked on the screenplay (01 six 
months. I gave it to Barry Diller, who 
relumed ii 10 me within thrrr hours 
saying lit- was afraid he couldn't 
make the film. Now 11 was impossible 
Ini him to have read these ript in direr 
hours. I wouldn't haveobjet letl to his 
response if the stiipi had het-n 
rejected a few days later. I became 


.it nlt’ls aware dial Ills teat lion had 
noili mg to do with 1 lit-sc t ipi, bill was 
due to Ins fetitl with David Picker 
(one of iht- project’s trackers). I was 
completely frustrated.' With a trace 
of a smile Claylon added, “I busted 
not only one window. Inn three." 

Listening to Clay ton 11 isc leai that 
he iefitst-s 10 Ik- ’’Disneyi/ed" in the 
least. "When I first talked 10 the Dis¬ 
ney organization a Iron 1 doing die 
film.** said Claylon, "I was loltl that 
they were try ing lot realea new image 
foi the studio. Itannoi sax whether 01 
not they will Ik* successful in that. Inn 
1 1 an lell you that ibex certainly didn't 
11 x to a Iter anxduug I wanted to do 
with die film. 

“I loltl ilit-in dial if they wanted to 
do this as an ordinal x hoi 101 film ora 
si 1 it 1 lx Disney* film. I wasn't intei- 
estctl.” he at It letl. "And whilt-l admire 
Rax Biadbury’s work tiemeiiduus- 
lx — I hale to say ibis—it's so Disney- 
ish. I tlidn’i want to emphasi/t- those 
elements ol the Irook. For example, 
the win h in the balloon. Ehat was so 


outlandish dial 1 111111 out of thefilm. 
Ehe approac h I wanted 10 take and 
did take with the material was this: 
you can I<m» k at everything th.it is 
hap|M-ning in 1 lie* story as literal. Inn 
at the same time. I suggested a level of 
die extraordinary — what may be 
happening." 

Clayton admitted the fantasy ele¬ 
ments of Bradbury’s |MM-tic will-o- 
the-xvisp prose made translation 10 
filmesptx ially c hallenging. I loathe 
repeating my self and I'd never madea 
fantasy Ik'Ioic*.*’ lie saitl. "I mean fan¬ 
tasy that isn’t extreme, like S I AR 
WARS, which is easier to do Ix-cause 
it neve* sits m anx soil of realism. 

"Mx belief is that the* fantasy in 
SOME IWNG WICKED 11 IIS WAY 
COMES must stem from something 
real," Clayton continued. “Iht- big 
difference between the eailier drafts 
ol the st 11 pi anti die Irook 11 self is dial 
I’ve done a inut h mem* real version of 
lilt- sit>1 y I ha 1 t an Ik* loughei. Imt I 
think 11 will work, l ot example. I've 
nietl lo make the telalionships 
Ixiwtvn the characters sirongei and 
t learer. In the lHM»k. die relationship 
lx*liveeil Will and Ills lalhei is soil of 
idealized—loxing anti consiant. Ext* 
t hangetl dial, so that in the iKgin- 
umg 1 here is considerable antago- 
nism lx*tween them. Jim's fatherless- 
ness is more of an issue, loo." 

Clayton, who views the film as a 
"flailx (ale foi adults.” alsoc (aims he 
has attempted to maintain an ambig¬ 
uous t|iialiix in the films phantasma¬ 
goric a I events, "hi die lx»ok. you'll 
rc-memlx-i. tlieie isa stene in thetown 
witli a him k of ite in a window." he 
saitl. "Inside, there isa magit alfigure 
whic h is absolutely real. In die film, 
though, you st*t- 11 one moment and 
dieii ii's gone; you're not sure whether 
01 not 11 was there. I want the atuli- 
eiit e lo always woutlei if (hex at lually 
saw and heaitl what they think they 
miglii have. so the film is lull of die 
otltl shadow, (lie stiange sound. I 
dunk that’s a f.u more restrained 
approac h and more intriguing foran 


76 








audience.” 

SOM! FIIING WIGKF I) I Ills 
WAY (lOMFS will also ik .h1 light l\ 
in theareaof s|xe ialeffec is. I s|x‘iiia 
da\ ai a certain effects facility in 
Venice (California |.” said Clayton. 

I asked them one sentenc e quest ions 
about tile* posslhi 1 1les lot c(‘It.llll 
effects. Well, each of their answers 
took 15 minutes, and it was the most 
complicated patter. From that day 
on. I realized I shouldn't lx* fooled In 
all the jargon. I d use* effects only 
when necessary and In the most sim¬ 
ple means possible." 

I he director’s intentions fm the 
film would ap|x*at to lx* echoes! by 
those of another maveric k talent, pro- 
due lion designer Richard MacDo¬ 
nald (ALTERED STATES. CAN¬ 
NERY ROW). Clayton, who claims 
MacDonald is “brilliant. e\|xnsive 
and woi ill it." wasdf lighted In hisart 
director’s timeless Mid western town 
and amorphous carnival sets which 
cost Disney more than $2 million. 

“In a haunting, rather simple, 
story like this one. you want toleavea 
blurred impression hi the audienc e’s 
mind.” said MacDonald. "To do 
that, of cc hii sc*, you cannot show tcx> 
mite h. Mice at nival isa total lac adeof 
veils, dilines, swii Is and ladies. ()n the* 
olhci hand. I saw Ctcen I own in an 
absolutely c lassical, straightforward 
1890 s-stvlc—very clean of line. For 
what Ix-ttei extreme's could a designer 
ask?” 

Clayton and Mac Donald rollabo- 
rated on anothci shift in approac h in 
adapting the classic allcgotical fable* 
to film. "In the Ixxik,” said Mac Do¬ 
nald. "the- lx»ys more or less see the 
carnival maieriali/c* before their eyes. 
We lc*lt that if youshowed all that text 
early in the- film, you’ve shot every¬ 
thing. Instead, we show a virt of 
vapeirons disinte gration ol thecatni- 
val. I lie carnival is swept away and 
becomes pan ol the* atmosphere 
around you. You’ll never lx* quite 
sure d the horses in the carnival mer¬ 
ry -go-round ac mails do go l!> mg ofl 
and c basing over the lull.” 

Clayton’s reputation as an "ac tor’s 
dim tor” .it tranc'd a distinctly non- 
Disney |x ifotming iroujx- in Jason 
Robaids. Diane (.add. Scott Wilson. 
Royal Danoand James Stacey. (Jay- 
ton’s choice lot the Dust Witch, after 
interviewing countless actresses and 
mcxlels, was Pam Grier—best known 


lot her plunging nee klines and 
explcxling magnums in such action 
fare as FOXY BROWN and FRIDAY 
FOSTER. Civeil stronger maieiial 
last year. Ctici huincd hole's m the 
sc iecu as a viper-heaited hcxikei in 
FORI APACHE, llll BRONX— 
the* role which attracted Clayton to 
the ac tress. 

"I wanted someone e xotic and 
beautiful." said Clayton. "Someone 
who could convey the idea of a win h. 
without resorting to the Disney con¬ 
cept of a hooked nose with a wart." 

As Mr.Dark. Clayton cast Jona¬ 
than Pryce, a formidable Welsh- 
born. 35 -year-old London stage and 
television actor, virtually unknown 
in this country. Pryce won a Tony 
award fot his tole in Mike Nic hoi’s 
pnxliic lion of Trevor Griffith's lacer- 
ating play Comedians. Fall and 
spindly. Pryce’s sardonic presence 
and sexual swagger should serve 
Biadbury’s incarnation of evil quite 


well. 

“I was ho|K*ful that a film could lx 
made which reflected the imagery 
and the* |xx*lic language that Btad- 
bury was using in the* Ixxik." said 
Pryce. “My c harac ter carries that side 
ol the writing and feeling of thclxxik. 
and that ap|x*aled tome, lie’s the one 
character that was able to retain the 
narrative style* ol the lx Nik. whereas 
all of the* others had to lx* written 
rollcMjuially. to lx* real. I c an play itas 
leal oi umeal as I c lie wise to. It’s Jac k’s 
job to pul in the imagc*ry and magic 
that cannot hedonewith the language." 

(llavton admitted to ha\ mg found 
his two adolesce nt stars "by total 
fluke." Ilis choice's for playing Will 
llalloway and Jim Nightshade are 
two relative unknowns. Vidal I 
Peterson and Shawn Carson. Peter¬ 
son did Little* Fheaicr in California 
and a tc*lc*\ ision men ie. Ml RDFR IN 
FEXAS. (arson ap|x*ared in AND 
JCS LICE FOR ALL and FUN- 


IIOI’SE. 

1 lie* dim toi vows that only in the* 
film’s final two rc*els—the confronta¬ 
tion with the malevolent Mt. Datk— 
will he “allow the film to go to the* 
extremes of fantasy. " To visualize the 
c lunatic disintegration of Mr. Darkas 
lie whirls around on a carouse l, vet- 
eian studio makeup artist Boh Sc hiffer 
has designed an extraordinary series 
of pup|x*ted, life -size* heads molded 
after the feature's of Pryc c. "I think the 
work is the finest I’ve ever done,” said 
Sc hiffer. "I also think that with the 
range of eye and facial movements 
I’ve designed, audiences will be 
unable todifferentiatc the he ads from 
the* teal thing." 

SOMETHING WICKED ITUS 
WAY COMES will be lurking under 
your Christmas tree in 1982 . Here’s 
hoping that this time the* Disney 
wrapper surrouiulsa fantasy with the* 
lute*, intelligence, and force Brad- 
bury’s Ixxik deserves. □ 






















A RETROSPECT OF THE 


ORIGINAL 


Howard Hawks’ 

THE THING 


The first movie about a monster from space 
also happens to be the best. 



by George Turner 


Flying saucers and alien invad¬ 
ers were staple ingredients n( 
numerous films of the 1950 s. Most 
of these are awful, some are toler¬ 
able. a few are go* nI. and one is great. 
This meister-werk of the genre was 
the first of us kind: Nil THING 
FROM ANOTHER \V< )RIT>( 1951 ). 
None of its imitators have 
succeeded in duplicating its 
admit blend of old-fash¬ 
ioned horror, newfangled 
science lie Non. he-man ad¬ 
venture. and down-to-earth 
romance*. Heaven knows, 
they've tried. 

f ile film is based on Who 
dors There? by Don A. Stuart, 
a well-written yam whic h de¬ 
buted in the* August 1938 is¬ 
sue of Astounding Science 
Fiction, a pulp maga 
line*. Stuart is a pseud 
onym of the maga 
line’s editor. John 
W. (iampliell |i 
(whose wife was 
Donna Stuart). 

The story tells of 
Antaictic e\|xtli- 
tioners who find 
an alien frozen 
in ice lot 20 mil¬ 
lion years. 

The creature 
is four feet tall 
and weighs 85 
pounds. Ii has 
blue* hair, green 
lades, and dim 
eye*s. When thaw 
ejuie kl\ to life and begins toabsorb 
other living things—sled dogs, live- 
stock and men. I he scientists kill 
the creature*, hut soon realize it 
has invaded several of their number, 
absorbing not only their bodies, 
but their minds and personalities 
as well. B\ rapidly multiplying this 
way. the alien could eventually take 
over the world. Fortunately, the sur¬ 
viving scientists find ways of iden¬ 
tifying the* imitation humans and 
destroy them. 


4 


M "Mggling 

W hb m» d. it ii- 

w angry red 
out. it comes 


JAMES ARNESS as the alien monster ot the title, in makeup devised by Lee 
Greenway. Greenway’s simple but effective design is glimpsed only briefly in the 
film, and kept mostly in shadow. Hawks, not the makeup, provided the thrills. 


As a full-time director and |>art- 
lime producer. I toward I lawks had 
made important contributions 
to a more naturalistic directorial 
style* in a wide variety of films. He 
baldly seemed the type to imtiatea 
flight of fancy of this sort. 
Bui I lawks untie c*d the growth of 
science fic tion magazine's after 
Wot Id War II and dec idctlto 
buy t lie rights to the* (lamp- 
bell story for his Wine hester 
Pic lures Corporation. 

In a press release Hawks 
stated that, "The advent of 
this t\|M* of film opens a 
vast story market. Because 
the subjec t matter is involved 
with that which is un¬ 
known. science fiction 
stories permit the use of 
ne w and different plot 
in the writing 
of screenplays. Clever 
writing enables one to 
hold interest by the 
presentation of a sc i¬ 
entific background 
whit h adds a lot of 
authentic ity tothe 
story as it pro¬ 
gresses. 

"It is important 
that we don’t con¬ 
fuse* the Franken- 
typeof film with 
science fiction pic ¬ 
ture,' Hawks continued. "The 
first film is an out-and-out horror 
thriller based on that which is 
mpossible. The science fiction 
film is based on that which is 
unknown, hut is given credibility 
by the* use of sc ientific fac ts which 
parallel that which the* viewer is 
asked to believe. Forgetting that 
a I me >st every I ie >11 y wc m m I st t id if > has 
at least one science fic lion story on 
its production agenda, one need 
only cliec k the growing popularity 
of the science fiction magazine to 
learn of theever-inc teasing demand 
for this type of literature." 

Curiously, I lawks never showed 
much interest in science fiction or 
macabre themes again. FX|x*cially 


79 









STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE for melting ice. according to the Air Force, called lor the use of thermite. Capt. Hendry (Kenneth Tobey). Lt. MacPherson 
(Robert Nichols), and the Crew Chief (Dewey Martin) plant the device as reporter Ned Scott (Douglas Spencer) records the historic event. It’ll uncover the whole 
saucer in 30 seconds, boasts Mac to Scotty. The actors sweltered in their arctic gear while filming these scenes in Southern California. Use of thermite causes the saucer to 
explode, an effect filmed during preproduction before any of the main actors had yet been cast. That's just dandy, gripes Scott. Standard operating procedure, huh. 


since Hawks had predicted tlu* 
“vast story market" that did indeed 
evolve. 

Winchester (which hap|x*ns to 
lx* Hawks' middle name) Pictures 
made a deal with Rk<) Radio Pic¬ 
tures to co-produce two large- 
budget pictures, 1 IIK. I TUXCand 
THE BIG SKY. The screenplay of 
the first was assigned to the versa¬ 
tile Charles Lederer, who had pre¬ 
viously written such notable suc¬ 
cesses as KISS OF DEATH. RIDE 
THE PINK HORSE.SLIGHTLY 
DANGEROUS. GENTLEMEN 


PREFER BLONDES, and others. 

Lederer and I lawks quit kly real¬ 
ized the story would lx* hard to film 
as outlined, so they concocted a 
simpler plotline that differed con¬ 
siderably from flu* published novel. 
In the course of a half-clo/en re¬ 
writes, the Lederer-Hawks version 
moved farther away from tlit* 
Campbell concept. 

The first draft of the script ke pt 
the monster closest to Campbell's 
description, hut by the time the 
script was ready to film, the mon¬ 
ster changed to a giant, hairless 


humanoid with a pec uliar resem¬ 
blance to Frankenstein. The Icxa- 
tion was changed from an uniden¬ 
tified research base on the- ho/en 
wastes of Antarctica to a United 
States Air Force base* on the* frozen 
wastes north of the* Arctic circle. 
But thechangefrom the South Pole 
to the* North Pole was not near ly as 
radic al as I lawks and Lederer’s jet¬ 
tisoning of the central concept of 
the novel; the ability of the alien to 
takeover the Ixxliesand personali¬ 
ties of others. 

Hawks and Lederer made their 
creature a giant humanoid vegeta¬ 
ble. jokingly referred to by the* mil¬ 
itary men who find it as a monster 
from "Mars." Stronger and swifter 
than a man. devoid of emotion, 
asexual, and completely merciless, 
the* monster plans to colonize earth 
with its own kind. T he alien lives 
on animal blcxxl—even its seed¬ 
lings sprout only in blood-soaked 
soil. The group of Air Force men 
and scientists, forced to defend 
themselves against the* lone alien, 
find him damnably hard to kill. 

With the scripting problems 
worked out, I lawks gave Christian 
Nyby. a highly-rated film editor 
with a yen to direct, the reins on 
THE THING as his first direc toi- 
ial effort. While in his later films. 
Nyby proved a versatile direc tor of 
features as well as television drama 
and comedy, many consider his 
contribution to THE I IIINGiobe 
minimal. 

That the* film is so definitely 
Hawks-styled is not surprising. lot 
Hawks was a strong-willed pto- 
ducer and was present at all first 
unit shcxrting as well as during 
location work. The loose handling 
of dialogue, with realistic interrup¬ 


tions and overlaps, is done in the 
best Hawks manner. The ac ting is 
splendid, I he pace is fast and 
smooth, with well-placed shcxks 
and diversions, and the* light tone h 
is present at the very times it needs 
to lx*. 

I lawks and his pattnei. Edward 
Lasker, made plans tofilmmuchof 
the picture on location in Fair- 
batiks and Nome, Alaska, where 
they counted on receiving govern¬ 
ment ccM»|x*ration. inc hiding useof 
equipment and |x*isonnel at U.S. 
Air Force bases. T his was standard 
procedure in the* making ol pic¬ 
ture's dealing with contemporary' 
military'ac tion. 1 'licit hopes were 
dashed when the following reply 
from Washington (dated September 
IT, 1950 ) was forwarded from 
RkO’s New York office; 

The script of Winchester Pic¬ 
tures' propttsetl production " The 
t hing ' has bent reviewed, and it is 
regretted that we will not be able to 
extend cooperation as the story 
revolves around flying saucers and 
their possible contents. 

The .Tir Force has maintained 
the position for some time that 
there are no such objects as flying 
saucers and does not wish to be 
identified with any project that 
could be interpreted as perpetuat¬ 
ing the myth of the flying saucer. 
A Iso, the A ir Force serious ly objects 
to any mention of A ir Force person¬ 
nel and equipment, or pictorial 
sequences reftre.settting Air Force 
personnel or equipment, being 
included in the film. 

Pnn'iding your company plans 
to proceed on the production with¬ 
out Air Force cooperation, we 
request every consideration be 
given to the .Tir Force objectiyn in 
the interest of maintaining good¬ 
will and relations. 
















Scenes filmed at the Montana location, 
an aerial view from Hendry's plane, 
and the expedition as it fans out to form 
the shape of the ship beneath the ice. 


The Air Force has dispatched a 
wire to the Com ma nder-in-Ch ief, 
Alaska Theater stating their objec- 
tions. 

Sincerely , 
DONAU)F\. BARUCH 
Chief, Motion Picture Sect. 

Pictorial Branch. 

The Air Force later relented to 
the extent of offer ing to approve 
the picture if the story was “pre¬ 
sented as a dream." The studioand 
Hawks agreed that such a change 
was untenable. It was dec ided to 
risk Uncle Sam’s displeasure and 


carry on without government 
approval. This meant finding dif¬ 
ferent locations and obtaining the 
proper aircraft, equipment, uni¬ 
forms and technical advice by less 
conventional methods. 

Meanwhile, as the Air Force 
stated its objections, a five man 
crew under c inematographer Archie 
Stout had been in Alaska for about 
a week, innocently shooting back¬ 
ground footage. Another crew 
mulct Harold Wellman also was 
working at Iverson Ranch, near 
Chatsworth. California, filming 


the full-scale fire and explosion 
that destroys the flying saucer. 
Within a month. Russell Harlan, 
three tor of photography, was shoot¬ 
ing tests of players at the studio. 

Although it has been said that 
James Artless was brought in as a 
last minute casting change, he 
actually was the first actor hired 
and received considerable advanc e 
publicity. Early in October. RKO 
permitted asssociate producer Ed 
Lasker to hire the obscure young 
ac tor to play the title role in THE 
THING. Artless was a good look¬ 


ing. 6 -foot 7 -inch blond giant, 
whose screen presence in the film 
was more like John Wayneplaying 
Flash Gordon than a “intelligent 
carrot from Mars." 

Artless was paid $ 7 . r > 0 a week with 
a four-week guarantee*. I le was also 
handed a SI .000 petty c ash vouc her 
in advance and a salary extension 
clause of eight days beyond the 
completion date as an inducement 
not to take other jobs before the 
start date of November 18 . Accord¬ 
ing to the budget submitted to 
RKO by producer Ed Lasker, 



OOPS! Hendry opens the greenhouse 
door and nearly gets his head knocked 
off. Scotty and Barnes (William Self) 
nail it shut, a scene dropped in editing. 













James Amess poses as The Thing, 
makeup by Lee Greenway. costume 
by Michael Woulfe. Billy Curtis, a 
perfectly formed midget, also 
donned the same guise for the 
sequence at the end of the film in 
which the monster appears to shrink 
when caught between powerful 
electric arcs and is fried to a heap 
of ashes. Above: Some of Green- 
way s unused makeup concepts. 


(.roller Fetinemaii and several oth¬ 
ers, known for ilini voic es as radio 
|X‘tsonalitics. hut with faces rela¬ 
tively new to the sc teen, were cast as 
scientists and technicans. James 
Young, a New Yoik disc-jockey, 
played Hendry's co-pliot l i 
Dykes. Kduatd F'tan/, Kdmond 
Hr eon. Kverett Glass and Norbert 
Schiller, all sc icniists. had long 
stage* bac kgrounds. Robert Gornth- 
waite. who has the lx*st chatactet 
tole in the film as the fanatical 
sc ientist in his'aOs. Dt.Garrington. 
was a young man in his early ’ 20 s 
who was unrecogni/able in his 
later pictures without his "mad 
doc tor” makeup. 

While casting was under way. 
location scouts searched for a suit¬ 
able stand-in for Alaska. I hey 
found it at Gut Bank, Montana. In 
December. Hawks, direc tor Nyby. 
10 actors and 27 crew members 
went via TWA Constellation to a 
windswept plain near ( ait Bank to 
stage the* sequence in which the* 
flying saucer and the Flung are 
found frozen in ice. 

Meals for the company were fur¬ 
nished by theClac iet Hotel, where 
most of the |x*rsonnel stayed, the 
remainder Ixing billeted in private 
residences. Dog slc*ds and teams, 
manned in part by teal Eskimos, 
were acquired horn the* Sun Valley 
Operations branch of the* Union 
Pacific Railroad. I wo camera 
crews were used, one headed by 
Russell Harlan and the* other bx 
Harold Stine (who also shot the 
ptex ess hac kgrounds). 

1 he ho|x*d-for snow was found 
in abundanc e. as it snowed nightly. 
Unfortunately, high winds blew 
the* snow away each day before 
much wotk could lx* clone. A trac¬ 
tor was used toe leal out thee itc iil.u 
area where the saucer had sup- 
(xisctlly clashed and Ixt omeentrap- 
ped unden the surface. Eventually, 
it became necessary to photograph 
most of the saucer scenes again, in 
the* San Fernando Valley. I he ice 
was created h\ pouring photo- 


Arness had to lx* "available at all 
times lot fitting his head and cos¬ 
tume's... as it will take* us some 
weeks to ptepate the* molds fot his 
head, which then can not lx* used 
on any other ac tor.” 

Dm ing the* preliminary stage's of 
designing the* makeup, stuntmen 
Boh Morgan. Chuc k Moreland and 
Sol Gotss stcxxl in lot Artless while 
I.ec* Green way tried to develop a 
monster that Hawks would ap- 
prove. (Earlier. Nicholas Yol|x*. a 
well-known Holly wood painter, 
was brought to Rk() to make 
numerous idea sketches fot the* 
makeup of the alien. None ol these 
fanciful concepts were used.) A 
budget ol $ 10,000 had been set aside 
for makeup experimentation. Sev¬ 
eral time's each week Greenway 
would bting his made-up stunt¬ 
man to Hawks' Btc titwcxxl home, 
hoping lot an okay. Nearly two 
elapsed before Amess went 
the camera in the approved 


Hawks rightly believed that a 
cast of solid actors from radio and 
the* stage* would lend moic*com ic- 
lion to a fantastic story than would 
familiar Hollywood ''names.** 
Hawks tested fashion mcxlel Mar¬ 
garet Sheridan for the- femme lead 
Nikki Nicholson after seeing het 
picture in /'ogtef—as was the case 
with I ..mien Bac all and Ella Raines 
several years earlier, ken Fobey. a 
smooth actor with considerable 
stage t‘\|x‘tiencc‘ and little movie 
c‘\|x>siiie. wasc ast as the* male lead. 
Captain 1 lendry. 

Douglas Spencer, a former stand- 
in lot Gary Coopet and Rax Mil- 
land who never graduated beyond 
bit parts was cast as irrepressible 
re|x>!ter Ned Scott. John I)ic*tkc*s.a 
formet FBI man who had been sent 
to Hollxwcxxl as a technical aelxi- 
sot and dec ided to remain as an 
ac tot. wasc hosen to play I)t. Chap¬ 
man. the leading sc lent if ic voice at 
the encampment in favor ol destroy- 
ing the I lung. 

Sally Creighton. Paul Frees. 


I 


82 










SEEDLINGS of the Thing are grown from seed pods taken from an arm 
severed in an encounter with the camp s sled dogs (inset top). Dr. 
Carrington reveals them to Dr. Laurentz. Nikki. Dr. Wilson. Redding, and 
Dr. Vorhees. Inset Bottom: Lee Greenway and his severed arm props. 



attempted to k(t'|) the alien's voie e 
the way Campbell described it: as 
“a savage*. mewing scream.” To 
actualize the* description, tracks of 
cat cries were slowed down and 
distorted. 

t here is an unforgettable se¬ 
quence wherein the* I hint* hursts 
into a dot mi ton and is doused with 
kerosene and set afire. After a lerri- 
ble struggle, it leaps through a win¬ 
dow and flees, still aflame. This 
elite t was filmed silent on KKO’s 
Stage 7 and utili/ed eight stunt¬ 
men. lout cameramen, fivec*lectri- 


FRY IT? is Nikki s reply when Scotty asks. What do you do with a vegetable? As Nikki monitors the accelerating flicker 
of the geiger counter which heralds the Thing s approach to their door. Hendry formulates a hasty plan: the Crew Chief 
and Barnes fill buckets with kerosene: Mac stands at the ready with a flare gun to light it: Lt. Dykes and Scotty wait 
anxiously. Eight stuntmen, doubling for the actors, labored seven days in the flames to film the scene s thrilling action. 


graphic solution over the*area and 
kiting it c rystallize in the*sun. Flu* 
actors, sweltering in the*ir attic 
gear. were* no more* comfortable* 
than thc\ had lx*en in the* sub-zero 
tcin|xiaiurc*s at (ait Bank. 

Anothci uncomfortable loca¬ 
tion was uiili/c*d lot the* mdooi 
sce nes o! the* base*, Id realistic ally 
|M>rtta\ the* frigid ate tic night that 
g!ip|K‘d the* liase alter the* Filing 
cut oil the oil suppl\. the se* scene's 
were filmed in an ic e* house on Mes¬ 
quite Slle*ei III Lets Ange les. Not 
surprisingly, the* breath ol the* 
actors va|»oii/es and the* reactions 
to the* bit lei e old ale* ie*alistie. Flank 
Tapia had used I lie* derpfrctve stu¬ 
dio while* lie* was making I .OS'I 
HORIZON I I \c*ais catliei. 

Oreenway’s $ 10,000 ex|x*timen- 
tation budget had more than 
doubled b\ the* time* I lawks okayed 
the* least complex design he had 
submitted. I lie makeup, rendered 
fitst in mortician's wax and then 
develo|xd as a loam rubber pros¬ 
thetic device, somewhat resembles 
makeup worn b\ Boris Kailofl m 

the 1931 FRANKENSTEIN. I lie 

domeil. hail le ss skull was etulx*l- 
lisheel with plastic \citis through 
which colored watei Mowed as 
Arness breathed. File device covered 
his nose. up|H*i elurks, forehead 
and neck, and was attached with 
spiiit gum. Flu* entire hc*ad was 
covered in varying shades ol gtern 
greasepaint. 

I he* forearms and hands, whic h 
were designed with claw-like 


thorns on the* knuc kies and linger- 
tips, weie fashioned like gloves. 
With s|H*e ial slux’s and the built-up 
skull Arness stood over seven lert 
high. Despite his size and a painful 
limp (the lesuli ol wounds received 
in the* landing at An/io when lie 
was in the infantry). Artless moves 
in a lithe*, cat-like* manner that adds 
a gieai deal of menac etothc*c harae - 
tc*r. Theac toi.alre*ad\ somewhat of 
a ■■loner,'' was embarrassed about 
ap|x*aring in the makeup over a 
|M*iiod of weeks. Even now he 
refuses to discuss it. I lie Firing is. 


nevertheless, a c harae te*i as immor¬ 
tal as the- Ih IovccI Marshall Dillon 
|x)itravc*d h\ A mess loi 20 years in 
I V'sC.rNSMOKK. 

Circrnway also made several ver¬ 
sions of the Filing's arm which is 
torn oil hv sled clogs early in the 
film. For the* scene in which the 
arm comes to life while Ixing 
examined hv the* scientists. one ol 
the* models was operated from 
inside hv a woman teaching up 
through a hole in the table. 

While the* physical sha|x* of the 
alien e hanged considerably. it was 












THE GENERATOR ROOM marks the compound's last stand against The Thing. As the Crew Chiel monitors 
the geiger counter. Hendry. Mac. Scotty and Dykes are ready to lure the monster down the corridor, booby trapped 
with high-voltage electricity. What if he can read our minds?" says Mac. Retorts Dykes, ax in hand. "He s gonna 
be real mad when he gets to me." Dr. Carrington is crushed when he makes a last-minute appeal (inset). 





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cians. two gtips. two prop turn, a 
cable man, six s|x*c ial effet ts men. 
one painter, two firemen, anil a 
doctor. No visitors were allowed on 
the set during the several days 
lequited to stage the at lion. James 
Arness, Douglas Silencer. Dewey 
Martin. Wiliam Self, and Rolx*tt 
Nichols appear in the early scenes, 
but were replaced by stuntmen as 
soon as the (ite diet t was begun. 

Tom Steele, a lanky stuntman 
noted foi his spectacular work in 
Republic and Universal serials, 
was assigned to double for Artless. 
I le was protected from the flames 
by asbestos coveting. Ilis head 
makeup was made ol a fiteproof 
plastic, lie was able to breathe 
through tulx-s whic h ran from his 
nostrils to an o|Miiing in the chest. 
Although the sc cues werec archills 
choreographed, two ol the stunt¬ 
men rccei\cd p.iinlul. hut not 
serious, burns. 

Die destitu tion ol the I lung by 
electricity was originally planned 
as a straightforward mechanical 
effect. Arness. Teddy M.ingenes 
and Hills ( Ait tis were all made up 
as the Thing. 1 lu* idea was to show 
the creature as it shrinks itoin the 
town mg Arness to the- avetage si/e 
Mangcnes. to (antis (a |xifr<(l\ 
fmint'd midget) and finally a hit ol 
rubble. Several attempts, however, 
proved unsatislac torv. 

At last, the c aineta effet t depart¬ 
ment was consulted. Lilt Dunn 
staged the sequence again and. in 


the optical printer, blended and 
smoothed the collection of shots 
tc >gciher with a series of elabc u ately 
controlled dissolve's. With the addi¬ 
tion of the lightning bolts, smoke, 
and a sound track that has to lx* 
heard to lx- believed, the scene con¬ 
vincingly depic ts the giant being 
cooked away by 1.6 million volts of 
elec trie ity. 

Principal photography was 
completed March 5, 1951. In |x»st- 
production, clouded skies were 
added via optical printer to relieve 
the bleak skies ol the Montana lo¬ 
cation scene's. The final cost of 11 IK 
THING was SI.257.527—one of 
the' more ex|x*nsive films of the 
titnedespite the "no-name” c asting. 

Kilmeditoi Roland Gross rec alled 
that he* was fore ed todropa numbci 
ol sc enes because of a dec ision, fol¬ 
lowing an early preview, to keep 
the' Thing indistinct. The cuts 
me hided c loseups of the I lung as 
well as group shots itt which 
At ness a| >|x-aieel withe>ther |ilayers. 

Originally, a sequence was 
itic hided in whic It the 1 lung kills 
two scientists and a sled dog and 
injure s Kduaid Ttan/ in the green¬ 
house'. He then hung the men 
upside- clown from tlie* rafters and 
diank blond from the throat of one. 
Roth the censots and the- preview 
audience lelx lled at the- sequence, 
which was removed cutitc ly. As it 
stands, the* scene isdc'scrilxcl by the 
sunning scientist. The investiga¬ 
tors l eac l to l he cor | >ses of I -c a met a 


and find the lxxl\ of the*dog hidden 
in a c abinet. 

Another excised scene showed 
the Thing hurl a guaid into the 
base’s oil pipeline, plugging up the 
system’s. In the final cut it isassumed 
that the Thing has sabotaged the 
base’s heating system deliberately. 

Dimitri Tiomkin’s score under¬ 
lines the eerie atmosphere of muc h 
ol the pic tine with strings and the 
wailing ol four women’s voices. 
The effee t sounds like the thrrrmm 
(an instrument that produces vary - 
mg elec (tonic tout's) in Miklos Roz- 
sa’s music loi SPELLBOUND 


(19-15) and Roy Webb’s for 'THE 
SPIRAL STAIRCASE (19*16). 

The score is appropriately 
jaunty lot the scenes of cheerful 
camaraderie that o|x*n the film, 
and punc males thc ac lion sequences 
with the same* btash rambunc tious- 
ness l iomkin employed for the' 
fights and shootouts of RED 
RIVER (1918) and Dl T EI .IN IT IE 
SUN (I9 M»). Several |x»p tunes are 
heard in the* romantic scenes. The 
destine tiottof the Thing is|>aiiic u- 
latly well handled: a strong 
buildup to the moment when the 
lx>1 ts ol elec tricity are unleashed. 


Howard Hawks presides at a dialogue rehearsal with director Christian Nyby, 
dialogue coach Lorry Sherwood (backs to camera) and unit manager Art Siteman. 







i 


I 




Howard Hawks gives 
THE THING his own 
distinctive trademark 

Conversational dialogue and 
great ensemble acting provide 
a context of realism that makes 
the science fiction element believ¬ 
able. This brief scene at the film's 
end (pictured below) is a perfect 
example of the Hawks' touch. 

NIKKI 

Anybody want some coffee? 

CAPT. HENORV 

No. but you can come in. 

NIKKI 

Oh. you'd better have some, you 
look awfully tired 

LT OVKES 

He should look tired He's had two 
things on his mind We've only had 
one. Now our worries are over 
while our Captain .. 

CAPT. HENDRY 
Oh. shut up 

LT. MACPHERSON 

Isn't there something you can do 
about it. Nikki? 

NIKKI 

Well. I don't know You know I'm 
getting pretty fed up with the 
North Pole How much does a 
Captain make a month? 

CAPT HENDRY 

Not very much. 

LT. DYKES 

That's a good start. Go ahead 

NIKKI 

Enough to support two people? 

CAPT. HENDRY 

Not nearly enough 

LT DYKES 

Oh. Captain, you get flight pay . 

LT. MACPHERSON 

.. some for each dependant .. 

CAPT HENDRY 

That's enough* 

NIKKI 

Oh. we can handle that 

CAPT HENDRY 

Look. I'm not gonna be railroaded 

CREW CHIEF 

Captain. I've got an idea, if you'll 
pardon me 

LT DYKES 

This is gonna work 

CREW CHIEF 

You oughta settle down. sir. 

NIKKI 

There you are 

LT MACPHERSON 

It'll be so much better for us. 

LT DYKES 

Sure, our Captain always flitting 
around, and getting into trouble 

LT MACPHERSON 

Remember that night in Honolulu? 

CAPT. HENDRY 

Eddie.. 

CREW CHIEF 

Ooh. that was pretty bad 

CAPT HENDRY 

I don't know what they're talking 
about 

LT. DYKES 

It was horrible 

LT MACPHERSON 

He oughta light somewhere 

NIKKI 

See. they know what's best 

CAPT HENDRY 

Uh. huh. 

Richards, the radio man. tells 
Scotty it's now clear to read his 
* »-rver ' wiies" wamhg~ 

reporters But Scotty manages to 
get in a parting shot. "I would like 
to bring to the microphone some 
of the men responsible for our suc¬ 
cess." he begins "But assemor Air 
Force officer. Capt Hendry is 
attending to (he pauses, to glance 
back at Hendry and NikkiJ demands 
over and above the call of duty.” 


followed by a gradual "c rumbling 
away” of the orchestra as the alien 
dies. 

The full title of the* film was 
intended to be, simply, NIK 
THING. As the release date neared, 
a novelty song of that same name 
was intrcxluced bv Phil Harris and 
Ixrame immensely popular. Fear¬ 
ful that the public would relate the 
pi< lure to the song, the studio hud 
the words,“ From Allot her World,” 
added to the main title. File adver¬ 
tising campaign was similarly 
resamjx*d and a message was sent 
out to exhibitors: "'Hie Filing o! 
the photoplay lias no relation 
whatever to the subjee f of a c urrent 
popului novelty song.” 

There is only one difference in 
the film as set'll in the theaters in 
1951 and today. Fheoriginal print 
order specified that the* scenes 
showing the Filing should lie 
‘‘printed down” (darkened) so the 
c ha rat ter c < mid not lx* seen clearly. 
Audiences were given only a lia/y 
impression of thee real lire's a|>jx*ar- 
ance. When the I*V and re-release 
piints were made, these instruc¬ 
tions were ignored (whether pur¬ 
posely or not) and Jim Arness has 
become easily recognizable. File 
pit ture is effective either way. 

Echoes of Universal's 1931 
FRANKENSTEIN are apjrarent, 
not only in the monster's appli¬ 
ance. but in several scenes. Hawks' 
upprouc h is entirely different, how- 



Nikki (Margaret Sheridan) and Capt. Patrick Hendry (Kenneth Tobey). 


ever, from this much-imitated 
st In m>1 of horror film. I’he foe us is 
no longet on the* monster, which 
typically is Ixxli hero and villain. 
Hie “leading man” traditionally is 
a miller dull fellow. Flit* typical 
leading lady is an attractive, not 
vei> bright, pawn. 

I lawks would have none of this. 
11 is only ventute* into tlu* genre 
utilizes the same he-man upprouc h 
he hiotighi to his marvelous West¬ 
erns, war picture's and mysteries. 
Flit* lot us is on c liurac ters whourc 
brave*, strong and resourceful. Flit* 
women are as braveandeffic ient .is 
the* tnen. 11 is monster isamenac eto 
hr feared and dealt with as one 


would deal with a marauding ban¬ 
dit gang, nothing more or less. It is 
a pleasant change and it works. 
Nonetheless. FHE HUNG is a 
horror pic ture. one of the handful 
that really hands the customei .1 
good, healths scare. 

At the time the picture was 
released many were disappointed 
that a lesshumun-IcKikingcreature 
was not tiesised. For some, this 
opinion remains unchanged. But 
with innumerable unsuccessful 
“blobs,” niblx i suits and met Irani- 
c a I monstcis ap|x*ar ing during t lu¬ 
pus! 30 yeais. this writer is con¬ 
sulted that Hawks and company 
made the 1 ight dec isioti. □ 


As Nikki serves Capt. Hendry some coffee. Lt. MacPherson (Robert Nichols), the 
Crew Chief (Dewey Martin) and Lt. Dykes (James Young) kid the romance along. 



Cast & Credits 

A «o*|>rn<lui linn nl KhO Kj«tio Pi.lurrs jnil 
Win.hrsin Pidurrs. 1 SI. M 7 miiiulrv Ihrrrtrd 
by C luiMMii Nshs. Prndutrtl by llimjiil 114 * ks. 
initnatrfttudiun. hlttjnl I j\krr \« trrti/ilny by 
< turlrs l.r«lrrrt. Haxrd mi Ihr itnry. “ll'Ao fitter 
Ihnrf" by John SS. ( 4 iti|>hrll Jr. ( inrtna/ng- 
tnfihrt. Russell ll.irl.in. SSC . Sftrttal rffrt lx. 
DimmIiI Slrwjrd. Sftrtutl fihithn’ui/ihn rffn t\. 
I .in* (mhI Dunn. SSC .If him t mnfttixrd and run- 
tiiutnlby Dimitri I inmkiii. trtditrtlnrx. SllirrlS. 
D'Aic.rstinn 4 ii*l John J. Iluichrv Srt drtmaluinx, 
Djih'II Sihrt 4 4111I AS ilium Strtrm. hint rdilm. 
Kol.mil C.imv S mind. Phil Kinundi jml ( Inn 
Portiiun. I xxixtanl dnrttmx, Srt Siirnun 4111I 
S| 4 \* rll linns. Makru/i artixl. Irr (.tmiMjv 
Cttxluinrx by Stiilurl Wmill* Unit xtylixt. I 411% 
C.rmum. Prnersi fthiitnt(infiby. II.Hold Slinr. 
SSC . iddiltnnal/ihtiln^ra/thy. Sr* hir Smut. SSC 
•oid lljtold SSrllnun. SSC . Srt mid unit art dim - 
tin. l.uiiusC tnxlnii. Hmtlut limt ituinagrt. W 4I1, t 
Danirls. 


Nikki . 

Sl.inj.ini Shrri(l4ii 

( 4|il. 1*4111* k 1 li mit \ 

. K. 1111 . ill 1 olio 

Di C 4rrini(t«Mi 

Koh* 11 ( oriilhu4ii. 

S*oii\ 

lloui;l4s S|m-ii« rr 

t.l. K*ldir Dxkrs 

)4inrs S ouiik 

( m u ( hirl Koh 

llrvrs Sl4tlin 

I t S| 41 Phi iv m. 

Kolirri Nil hols 

C or|ior4l K 41110 

SS ilium SrII 

lit. Sinn. 

.1*11141*1 Fran/ 

SI IS. ( Il4| 1111411 

S 4 11 \ ( rrii(hl.»n 

Thr 1 him;.. . . 

.J4tnrs Arnrsi 

lit. Soil most 

Idmond Rinin 

lit. ( h4|ini4n . 

. John Dirrkrs 

Di. Wilson. 

. . I.snrlt (.l 4 ss 

tllv.n 

.AS ilium Nrll 

lit. S others. 

l\iul Frrrs 

Ill 1 4111*111* 

Norbrvl S* hilln 

Kniilini;. 

C*. ori;. Inin, nun 

C ooki 

.trr T unic F.mi 


S\4hn Nic 

C,rnrt4l tot;4m 

II 41 id S|, Sl.ihon 

C 4|»um Smiih . 

KoIh 11 Sirsrnvin 

( nifHiul IIjusti . 

Rnltrtl (•ultirthl 

1 i< in* ttaiN . 

1 nl C *Hi|M*r 

Officci . 

SII 411 K 4 \ 

Kl.ll 4 l.ls 

\i« hol4s Ruoii 

( 4 |il 4 in. 

KoIm n Rr 4\ 

Siuniinni . Roll S|< 

• IIIC4H. 1 Otn Sirrlr. 

C hui k Sion I4111I. ( luilrs K. i>4ii. 


Ihi k C riHkili, l.nlirC h^iin. 
hrn I rtrrl. Russ S4iindris. 
Kill lx* in. Sol C.orw 
Dokr 14tlnr. I rd S|jni>rjn. 

<in<l Rilh Curtis 


85 






































CAPSULE COMMENTS 


ANNIE 

Wilh: Albert Finney. (ji»I Purnell. Ber- 
nadrtlr Prtrtv TimC urrx. Ann Krinkiinc 

Lrapm' Budgets! I his is a very 
big. loud. ns t-r heating musical 
comic snip wIm h tries so hard at 
getting you to like it. you iiiit^lu 
eventually cave in Irom sheet 
exhaustion. Musual-haters won't 
Im- converted, hut the film has a 
crusty tone that lern|x*rs the sac¬ 
charine nicely, Credit that to vet¬ 
eran duet tor Huston’ssensibilites 
and a very good cast working at 
jx*ak lor in. Not nearly as cutesy- 
poo as it might base been. * • SR 

John I lusion duet ling a $.VJ mil¬ 
lion musical?? llic HtK will bra 
s.hI decade indeed. • l)R 

Banjo The 

Wc xmPiLt C :aj_ 

Ihretied In linn Bluih. ABC:- TV. V I M2. 

SO minx. With ihexni<rxol:S|»arkx Minus 
Suinun ( mlhrtv Br ju Ri< hards. 

Four years anti nine months m 
tI k* making, this animated child¬ 
ren's short is a tn.ijm disap|M»int- 
ment irom Don Bluih Studios.the 
animators behind 11 IK SUCRE I 
OF NIMH. Story is thin and 
unoriginal, (kidded with syrupy 
s<Nigs. Animation is okay, bui 
characters seem derivative and 
reallv don’t look much like cats. 
Kven kids w ill find this dull and 
preachy. • JPII 

Blade Renner 

I hr n ini In Ridlex Stull. A Mtino Brin 
rrirasr.fi M2.111 nuns. In Color, Sc opr and 
Ihilbs sirrm. W ilh llarrixon turd. RuiRet 
tlaurr. Sr an \ounR. 

A poignant, bitterly-Hawed 
poem. There are several scenes so 
moving m their spiritual humil¬ 
ity that they verge on the hurtful, 
and this accomplishment (coupled 
with the most convincingly-de¬ 
tailed future wot Id ever commit¬ 
ted to film) is too rare to admire 
grudgingly It’s not (K-rlect—it's 
overtextured, erratically struc¬ 
tured and a little mo heavy tin the 
Vangelis store. Harrison Ford's 
monotone narration—in which 
lie sounds more Imicd than jaded, 
more fed-up than hard-boiled—is 
the worst problem. 

• • • Tim Lucas 


Kristy McNichol visits brother Jimmy 
on the set of BUTCHER. BAKER. 
NIGHTMARE MAKER, his first film. 





IRK TOR Bl’TCHKR. M.D. 

With: Ian \|i< ullmh. llexandra C-ole. 
Donald O'Brian. Shrris Bui Italian 

M. 1). stands lot Medical Dt-si- 
ale—just vestal average jungle doc 
who |ierforms hi am tiansplants 
on ctrust unis y it tuns after sever¬ 
ing then sot alt hotels. Pretty gross 
with dismembeirneni. autopsies, 
mutilation, cannibalism, mag¬ 
gots. s< a I pings, eye gougings anti 
decapitation by outboard motor. 
I he makeup oil reanimated 
corpses is t|uite gotnl; otherwise 
the duhlied link is pietls stupid. 
Flier e arc nora|x*s. as promised by 
the poster, hut there trreacoupleof 
I lls and Ass st enes. • JPII 


E.T.—The 

EXTRATERRESTRIAL 


Conan The Barbarian 

With: Arnold N« hx»arrmeRRer. San da hi 
Brig man )amn tail J«nn.(Hir» taiprr. 

Milius’ approat h tomes c loseto 
pomposity. Ixit it istem|K*rcdwith 
sufficient yvit to lx- grand enter¬ 
tainment. Arnold is fine m title 
role, but real stars are pliniog- 
raphy and set costume design. 

• • • David J. I lagan 


The epitome of male adolescent 
mat ho crap. Milius even bungles 
some of the action set|uenc es. Hie 
dialogue is altix ions, and unable 
to mateh the “realism" ol the set¬ 
tings. Hie film is hi deep trouble 
every time Schwarzenegger o|x’iis 
lus mouth. Iloyvaii! fans should 
he of letided. • DR 

Dead Men Don’t 
Wear Plaid 

With: Nicer Marlin. Rat l»rl Ward. Carl 
Renter. Rent Sanlini. 

Often hilarious, this film nan 
s|NMtf gets the* textures tight on the 
money—from tlx- lustre of Mic liael 
Chapman's lirtrsv t ux'iiutograpliy. 
to the sheen of Rathel Maid's 
femme fat air lips. I T n fortunately, 
the giimiutk wears thin halfway 
through. ••SR 

Death Vall ey . 

Ihretied he link Rnharde. 1 t nixetxal 
releaee. *» 1C. *M) minx. Wilh: Paul IrAtal. 
C aihetuir Hiikx. Sie|thett Mr llallie 

Dull ctNnbination of m-dejith 
characterizations and unmoti¬ 
vated slasher horror. Hie former is 
interesting, hut wasted: the latter 
is inept. Nothing's worse than a 
hortor film that doesn't know 
what to make of itself. • DR 


Henry Ball has a grip on comely Patricia Alice Albrecht in GHOST DANCE. 


A true original. Even tliough it 
lus no story to s|x*ak of. it wins 
hands down rm its visual style. 
Some of the images arestagger mg. 
I got the feeling I was watching a 
true science fitliun film lor the 
fitst tune. I lie (luxlut turn design 
is superb, all *40scostumes. Sc oil 's 
stock-in-trade smoky atmosphere, 
and 11 edible depiclion of a future 
L.A. Also features the best Ikxig- 
las Ttumhull spec i.deffects yet. 

• • • •Alan Jimes 


Blonde Godd ess 

Him trd bx Bill F^rIc. A Ihxinpix releaxe. 

S M2. With: Suxtnut Bnliun. Jatquelme 
latrianx. Jmitilun lurd. 

A quartet of (xinio fantasies 
tonjured up by an artist of Marble 
(sio Comics. Daydreams include 
an tNiier space epic with cartoon 
animation effet is and. the Ix’st. a 
take off on RAIDERS OF I HE 
LOST ARK featuring Louisiana 
Smith and Jungle Jane. Photog¬ 
raphy, at ting and editing are 
below par even for a porno film. 

• DS 

Blither. Baker. 

Nic.him are Maker 

Ihretied bx W illiam Axher. *12 minx W ith: 
Jimmx McNichol. Suxan Txicll. B<> 
Nxrnxnn. 

Sick, sit k Susan I y tell holds 
her orphaned nephew (McNi¬ 
chol), whom she raised from 
childhiKid. in the possessive grip 
of smother love. dis|x»smg of all 
who threaten the continuance of 
their relationship. Stnpi initially 
promises to redeem quite distaste¬ 
ful material, sta nicely drawn 
characters and flashes of humor, 
hut sex>n degenerales into a stand¬ 
ard killfest. Asher's direction is 
routine. Lyrell can do this brand 
of histrionic dementia m her 
sleep. Currently seeking distribu¬ 
tion. JRP 


With: l>rr Wallace. Ilmtx I h«miax. Peler 
(ox me. Robert McNauRhlon. 


Rambaldi’s makeup t real ion is 
a marvel—ugly, but ap(x-aling. 
There is too mut h Disney and loo 
little plot. es|Kt tally the dumb 
chase scene Ix'lure the (harming 
and heart-tugging ending. A 
must-see lor the effects and the 
terrilic performance of itiop|Kt 
I homas. hut I. for one. tould have 
done with a « ouplc tons less c ulc- 
ness •••JPII 

A wonderful, stirring piece ol 
filmmakiiig. Director Sptellx*rg's 
penchant lor big-time gadgetry 
and mechanics takes a welcome 
kick seat to whimsy. Mights of 
imagination and left-field (harm. 
Per lei tly cast, gorgeously realized 
in every let Initial area, this is 
Spielberg's most sustained and 
im iguraiing fantasy to dale 

• • • • SR 


I here's something about making 
alien beings the fix us of humor, 
sentiment ami gn at warmth that 
comes |M‘tilously dose to iixide- 
seen sion. mviali/ation ami m.mip- 
ulation. Not to fall with these gis- 
ens requites the most tumble ol 
high-w’irc at is. and damn il Spiel¬ 
berg and writer Melissa Maihismi 
luven’l (Milled it oil! With E. I.. 
Spielberg teiapiures the heart 
lhat’s been mostly lacking since 
SLC.ARLAND EXPRESS 

••••JRL 


The Martians are Coming!—Russian style—in THE WAR OF THE WORLDS. 



Kurt Russell is armed and dangerous 
in hla fiery battle with THE THING. 
John Carpenter's startling shocker. 


Forbidden World 

Ihretied bx Alan llol/man A Nex» World 
Pidurrx releaxe. *» M2. Wilh Jrxxc Vini. 
IIcmii Dunlap. I.indent.hiIrx. 

I icily .nsltd ALIEN tip-off ill 
which a qu.uk ikxior and brain- 
lc*ss i at hops at a s|kice lab are 
iiicn.Mfd bv a vorac ious monster. 
Allan llolzman's editing and 
dim lion are murky aiidcKtasion- 
ally incomprehensible. It some¬ 
how figure’s that the hero of the 
pit ture is a c am emus liy c*r. 

O David J. Hagan 

Ghost Dam:e_ 

three led bx Peirr Build. An Ahreme-xx pro- 
duriion. S M2. Wilh: Julie Amain. Vidor 
Molina. tlenrx Ball. 

Anheologisis hi Arizona un¬ 
earth an evil Indian spirit who 
possesses a would-be medicine* 
man (Henry Ball) and Ix-gms a 
killing spree. Dcspiiecitic.atmos- 
phem camera work ami some 
handsome locations lit I ucson 
and the Arizona desert, this low- 
budget lirst c*f lort by Kull.i is ham- 
|x*red hy ihe director’s sluggish 
pacing and lus inexperience with 
actors. • Dale l.uciana 

The Golden Fern 

Ihreiled bx JiriWeixx. I%ill K2. lilmext. 
110 minx. In Bla« k 1- W hile. and Sr ope. In 
(aethoxlox akian (xxilh xuhinlexi. Wilh: 
Vit I fInter. Karla (Jiadimoxa. I>aniella 
Smuina. 

Dtayvn from aCzcchosolvaktaii 
legend alxml a shejihetd who 
steals a rare golden lent horn the 
hratt ol a In inglorest.lhismastrr- 
fctl. hut leisurely-paced, him is 
exotu . ambiguous, and |x»ssesses 
impressive penmt detail and 
amazing com ic lion lot a fantasy. 
Desets mg ol i lassie status, the 
him should Ix'iome a repertory 
(jerennial. ••••jRt 

The Great Alijcator 

ihrerled bx SerRio Star mm I BS- I S . *• M2. 
|IM) minx. Wilh: Battuta Rath. Claudia 
( axxmell. Mel Ferrer. Ru liard johnxon. 

Director Matnnoof SCRE AM¬ 
ERS botched this Italian elloit so 
Uulls it never was released domes¬ 
tically until (.BS picked ii up as 
irxldet lot then late night 4 bed- 
ule. A giant alligator, worshipped 
by natives, attacks a resort run by 


























FLM RATINGS 


• ••• ••• •• • o 

MUST SEE EXCELLENT GOOD MEDIOCRE WORTHLESS 


FILM TITLE 

DB 

FSC 

JRF 

JPH 

MJK 

SR 

DS 

ANNIE John Huston 

Columbia. 5 82. 126 mins 

• 




• • 

• • 


A STRANGER IS WATCHING 

Sean Cunningham MGM. 1 8? 91 mms 

• • • 

• • 

o 



o 

o 

THE BEAST WITHIN Philippa Mora 

United Artists. 2 82. 92 mms 

• 

o 

o 

• 

• 

• 

• • 

CAT PEOPLE ^aut Schrader 

Universal 4 8? 119 mms 








CONAN THE BARBARIAN John Mil,us 
Universal. 5 82. 129 mms 

• 

• ••• 

• • 

• 

• •• 


• 

DEAD MEN DON T WEAR PLAID 

Carl Remor Universal B& W. 5 82 89 mms 

• 

• • 

• • 

• 

o 

• • 


DEATHTRAP Sidney Lumet 

Warner Bros. 3 82. 11S mins 

• 

• •• 

• • 

• 




DR. BUTCHER. MD 'rank Martin 

Aquarius. 9 81 80 mms 


o 


• 



• 

E.T.—THE EXTRATERRESTRIAL 

Steven Spielberg. Universal. 6 82. 118 mms 








EVIL UNDER THE SUN Guy Hamilton 
Universal 3 82 117 mms 

• • 

• • 


• •• 


• • 

• • 

FANTASIA Prod by Wait Disney 

Buena Vista. 3 82 re-re! t 1940). 126 mms 



• ••• 

• •• 


• ••• 

• •• 

HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME 

Michael Tuchner. CBS-TV. 2 82. 100 mms 


•• 


. 

• 

• 


ONE FROM THE HEART 

Francis Coppola. Columbia. 2 82. 101 mms 

• 

• • 


• 

• ••• 

• • 

• 

PARASITE Charles Band 

Embassy 3 82. 85 mms. 3-D 

• 

• 


• 

• 

o 


POLTERGEIST Tobe Hooper 

MOM UA. 6 82. 114 mms 








QUEST FOR FIRE Jean-Jacques Annaud 
20th Century-Foa. 2 82 97 mms 

• •• 

• 

• •• 

o 

• 

• • 

• • 

ROAD WARRIOR George Miller 

Warner Bros. 6. 82. 95 mms 

• ••• 


• •• 



• •• 

• •• 

THE SEDUCTION David Schmoeller 
Embassy. 2 82 104 mms 

• 

• • 

• 



• 


SILENT RAGE Michael Miller 

Columbia. 4 82. 100 mms 

o 

• • 

• 




• 

STAR TREK II: THE WRATH OF KHAN 

Nicholas Meyer Paramount. 6 82. 113 mms 

.. 

• ••• 



• •• 

• • 

• •• 

SWAMP THING Wes Craven 

Embassy. 2/81. 92 mms 


• • 

• 


• 


• • 

THE THING John Carpenter 

Universal. 6 82. 106 mms 

• •• 


• • 



. 


VENOM Piers Haggard 

Paramount. 2 82. 93 mms 

o 

• •• 

• • 

• • 



• 

VISITING HOURS Jean Claude Lord 
20th-Century Foa. 4 82. 104 mms 

o 

• • 

o 

o 

• 

o 


WORLD WAR III David Greene 

NBC- TV. 2 82 200 mms 

• 

• 

• • 


• 


• • 

WRONG IS RIGHT Richard Brooks 
| Columbia. 5 82. 119 mms 

• 

• 

• 

• 

• • 

• 

• •• 


DB— David Bartholomew FSC- Frederick S. Clarke JRF-JordanR Fox JPH Judith P Harris 
MJK— Michael J. Kaplan SR— Stephen Rebello DS— Dan Scapperotti 


Ferrer. who obviously drvnn ii. 
since hr (nils livr (iigltis lo ihr 
crocodiles. Flit- gator tcM'inblna 
dead ruhbrry log. Gives new 
meaning lo ihr word ' (lull. " 

o jpii 

Tilt Last Chase _ 

DiinirHIn MimuBuikr. Unmn-lnin- 
national rrlra* *r (HBO>TV). I M2 KM 
minv With: I rr Ma|or*. C hri*Wakqx-a*r. 
But«r** Mrrrdiih 

llus httUK .inadi.in dog skijrjitd 
ihr.mit al release and went straight 
lo pay table. Lee Majors plays an 
ex-rating driver in a hmirisiu 
U.S.A., where lilt-re is no more oil 
and tars are illegal. Giaisumately 
sinpiti anti a waste ol film, o JPH 

A nit el\ iintleiplavetl lookat post- 
4|MNal\piit America. though the 
disaster that has hit the tountry 
seems as iniit h | m iliin al as let lino- 
logit al. Burgns Meretluh is ext el- 
lent as a drunken fighter pilot 
Risen one last mission—lodestros 
Majors and his slum rt-tl race car. 
Action sequence* with the car and 
jet are stunning, anil sequent es in 
a Strangelov i.m tonirtd loom art- 
well duet tt-d. • • • MJK 

The MvsTERiors 
Stranger_ 

Dirntrd b* Prlrt H. Hunt. It BO-TV. 
S S M2. 90 mins. W ith:< hmtophrv Mikr- 
prair. Irrd (itonr. Ijmr kroon. Bernh¬ 
ard H itki. 

In IHM). a printer's ajiprentice 
(MakejM-at e) dreams lumst*lf liat k 
to medieval Austria. A stranger 
tailed *11(1 ant e Kerw in) ajipean. 
prat tn mg telepathy and telepor¬ 
tation and making lilt* miserable 
lor a charlatan alchemist (End 
Gwynr). Mark Twain's last novel. 
unpuhlishc*dai his death, servesas 
the basis for this 1982 German TV 
movie. Prettv dull, with a disap¬ 
pointing resolution. o jpu 

Poltergeist_ 

Huh: JnBrth W illiams. Craig T. NHson. 
Brain*r Miai«hi. Itraihrr tl'Rourkr. 

Producer Steven Spiel berg 
plays Howatd Hawks to duet tor 
Tobe Hooper's Ghristian Nyby. 
There is so ttiuth Spielberg on 
displav that much t»( tlx* film 
unreels like a virtual medley of 
Steve’s and II.M's Greatest Hits. 
While the sharply drawn tharac- 
tm/ations are nue. anti the plot 
neatly sidesteps the obvious pit¬ 
falls. it is the finale, for all its 
snam pyrotechnics, that sags. It's 
like the best storyteller on the 
block collaring sou with a gag 
he's told you before. • • • SR 

Facile, rather hollow moviemak¬ 
ing from the Spielberg factory. 
Superb let hnital fat ilits and good 
entertainment value cannot dis¬ 
guise a slums story that never 
works up any real menace. Beauti¬ 
ful JoHeth Williams s lands out in 
a talented cast, but overall effet t is 
as emotionally involving as a 
well-made juu ol shoes. 

• • Dnrui J. Hogan 

This Spielberg-1looj>er collabo- 
raiitHi mulls its opportunity to be 
one of the best films on juranor- 
mal phenomena to date. Instead, 
it's a footrace lietween the over¬ 
whelming and the overblown. If 


the corpse gag worked twice m 
RAIDERS, it has to work 20 tunes 
here .. . right? ILM's contribu¬ 
tton poses the question id w hether 
effet Is tan lx* .so good that dies 
drown a meager story. • • JRt 


Dire* led b* Srrifto Martino Mil hart 
llrakc. A New World Pi*turr* release. S K2. 

*1 min*. In < iolorr. With: Barbara Bath 
Claudio <a**mrlli. Rithard J*»hn*on. 
Joseph C i*iion. Mrl Ferrer 

Reviewed previously (11:3:52) 
andt rtdittd to the pseudonymous 
Dan S. Miller, the film is Marti¬ 
no's retraining of the cast from 

HIE GREAT ALLIGATOR in a 


low -budget Italian horror to 
which New Worltl Pit luresadtied 
a marginally relevant gore j»ro- 
login- Mad scientist Codon 
creates amphibious creatures to 
plunder the ruins of Atlantis. 
Johnson is dubbed w ith a Ronald 
Colinan-ish at tent, giving a 
Minus Pvthon /anmess to all lus 
lines. Pretty silly. • JPH 

Star Trek ii. 

The Wra i h of Khan 

With: William Strainer. Lennar* Nimo*. 
Drlorm hr Mr*. Ritardo Monialhan. 

Maybe you ran go home again. 
This Enter pi i sc- appears to have 


tome straight out td a time warp 
from I9H9. bringing with it the 
qualities whit h made the series so 
enduring: characterizations and 
involving human drama, served 
with a w tupron td imagination 
and adventure. Paramount, w hat 
took you so long! ••••ESC 

T he Thin g __ 

With: hurt Russrll. Ruhard K. I>**an. 

(Carpenter's most mature and 
stable film in many years. Audi¬ 
ences will stumble away from this 
ink- with their heads reeling from 
its unbclievabh astonishing ef¬ 
fet Is sequent t*s. exet uted by one of 


tlx* longest lists td magicians in 
film history. Roh Koiim. who 
m aster tn in dec! ibis stuff, was 
reportedly liosj>iiali/ed for ner¬ 
vous exhaustion ht-lotc- most td it 
was shot. Hill Lancaster's sc npt is 
literate, hui the logit (never (ar- 
|x*nter s strong sort > is jnedit tahly 
I i.t 11 i». i k« «I • • • Tim l.ucas 

Tomorrc m s Child 

llllnlrd l» Jo*r|th Sai|(rnl IBC-TV. 
^ 22 M2. 9% mm* W ith: Str|»h4Mir/imhal- 
isl. William Srhrrtnrt. Srihur tlill, Susan 
Oliver. 

Su|M*rh .m ting in an ambitious. 
tNigmal drama about contepiion 
anti growth ol a fetus entirely out¬ 
side the hods, /imhalist as a 
ceramic s leac her is. at first, a gotnl 
egg over her husband's ejat illa¬ 
tions almiil I lit- Genesis Project 
until slit* tnines to terms w ith her 
own doubts about the stieiuifit 
unknown I hre.it from the "mad- 
scientisl" Institute seems con¬ 
trived. es|Mt tally since nothing 
ever goes wring with the fetus. 
I’llimaielv talks, humdrum, and 
jioorly t tint eivetl. 

• • Slrrcn Dimro 

UNION Cm _ _ 

Hirer ted In Mark Rriahrrt. A C nlumhra 
llnmr \ nirriainmrni release. S Nl'. W 
min*. With Drtini* I ip***»mh. Deborah 
llarr*. F.vrretl St,t.ill. Pat Benaiar 

Nc-ilher a lose suns not a rtxk 
film, hut a moody. mtKlt-raiely 
worthw lult Iflorror td Persouality 
ihnllt-t. I.ijrstomhisextellt-niasa 
highstrung. apparently shell- 
slio* kt*tl WASP ur lull dweller, 
who murders a v.igrant lor toj>- 
pmg sips td milk from his door- 
stej>. Harry is not * nils good as his 
neo-nympho wife, hut actually 
t harming ••Tim l.ucas 

Visiting Hours _ 

Dire* led b* Jran ( laud*- Lord 20th-(en- 
tur* Fo» release. I M2, |0 r » min* Intolnr. 
With: Mi*harl Ironside. larf,rant. Wil¬ 
liam Shalt**-?. tenon- /ann. 

While this tale td a maniac on 
the loose in a hosjiital votes no 
points foi originality. Lord's 
kineiit dim lion grqis sou like a 
steel trap. It's suspenseful. scary 
work from a duet tor svho. up to 
now. had all theearmarksof Ix-mg 
just another (.iii.mIi.iii tax-shelter 
fiat k. •• FSC 

War Of The Worijis 
—NextCenttrv _ 

IhirOrd b* Pioir Srulkin Film Pnlskt, 
War*a**. nith tn<lt*h subtitle*. 2 M2 
(« I AMI). 9b min*. With: Roman W ilhelmi. 
Kr**t*na Janda. Jrrr* Stuhr. 

I his allegout.il ujMlating is 
deditated lo 11. G. Wells and 
Orson Welles, hut leans more in 
the duet lion td kafka and Georgc- 
Orwt-ll The Martians (or wasthat 
the Russians. . ?) have landed, 
and all they want is lose, blood, 
and blind obedience. Die film is 
not without its moments, hut is 
plodding in tilt- East-European 
manner anti v-ldorn really engages 
S/ulkin tit res achieve a satirical 
savaging td the "reality" td televi¬ 
sion and adeptly shows how one 
form of tyranny substitute** for 
another. Pro|)hetit or riot, the 
revelation comes a little late for 
Poland. • JRF 


Screamers 


87 














































































































































ainucfn rtunncn 

SKETCH BOOK 

BLADE RUNNER is set in an eerie future of "retro¬ 
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The complete script to the blockbuster film, con¬ 
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believable panorama of the future. Trade paper¬ 
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PORTFOLIO 

Twelve high-gloss, action photos of Harrison Ford 
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year. CFQ BOOKSHOP proudly introduces three new Blue Dolphin Enterprises publications presenting 
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REVIEWS 


Low-budget Sword & Sorcery played for laughs 


The Sword and 

The SORCERER 

4 l.riNip I Mints rrlrjw. I K'J ion mim. In tulnc. 
IHmtrd In 4lhrti IS mi Written In Albert P\un. 
Ih"nu% KarnonUti. jiid |<»hn Slut kmrtn PriHlutetJ 
In Brandon ( hav ami Manannr ( hav. I tnuiitr 
Pioduirr. Rohm S. Birmvin. C inrmaloRraphrr. 
Jor»|ih MariRinr. 4ddilional |»hoioRra|»h%. (.art 
(•ratn 4 m dim lion. I•mri(r I «nlHlo. Musn In 
Hand WliHukrr Sperial makeup effeilv (>irt( 
(annom. kddilional makrup rllnli In Makrup 
Minis l ab S|,r«ial rlln is. John ( arirt. Spmal 
weapon* ilrsiRn. Korm llol/henc C.nturnrv ( Imsiinr 
I'mar. F.diiof. Marshall llarsrs. 


Talon 
4lana 
Mikah 
Ma. lull. 

( rnnnsrll 
\ usi a. 


lav llorslrs 
Kathleen Rrllir 
. Simon Mail mkindalr 
(mirRr Mahans 
Riihard l.imh 
Km hard Moll 


Willi c li.it.ii (rrisiii l.u k of f.inliirc. 
Grou|> I Films (ALLIGATOR) has 
quietly njistagcci Universal's $17.5 
million CONAN MIL BARBAR¬ 
IAN by rushing out this scaled-down 
slice of pulp fantasy only three weeks 
before Oman's release. Wonder of 
wonders. THE SWORD ANI) HIE 
SORCERER tin ns out to lx* damn 
effective filmmaking—and for only 
$.L. r > million (sans advertising) less 
than it cost to build just theTemple 
of Set foi the Arnold Sellwar/enegger 
rjiit. 

I be ojK'iiing scene is a grabber. 
Ehepowerful demon. Xusia(Ric haul 
Moll), is awakened from a thousand- 
year slerj) In a bla< k win b on behalf 
of tbe t*vil Cromwell of Aragon 
(Rii baid Lync b. in a expertly sinister 
performance). 




■ 


As the witc b's Ihh iis-jxk us lx*gins 
to takeeffec t. a wall of sand-(*ncrusted 
skulls becomes an artii ulated cask of 
screaming heads (designed In Char¬ 
lie Chioto and sculpted In Chioto, 
Sieve Chioto. and Mike Jones). Out 
of a bubbling jxxil of blood rises 
Xusia himself. exhibiting lus nasi) 
ieni|XT.mieni In i ijiping the win b's 
heart fiom her chest. Why a demon 
would want to lx* a stooge foi an 
obviously untrustworthy conquerer 
like* Cromwell is never clear, but 
Xusia agrees to assist him in bis rape 
and jiillage of the emjiire ol gcxxl 
king Ru hard. 

Eleven years later, after the brutal 
murder of Ri< hard and bis family In 
Cromwell, the surviving prince, 
1 alon. (|>lay<*tl In Lee Horslev. seen 
recently in LVs NERO WOLFE)re¬ 
turns to tbe c ity of his hiiih as a mer¬ 
cenary, adventurer and rogue(embat- 
rassingly |xx>r stex k shots arc* used to 
represent the cities, a substitute for 
lilanned matte paintings whic h were 
evidently considered unusable). 

In no time. Talon is drawn into a 
plot to overthrow Cromwell by a 
“beautiful young princess,” pl.ned 
by Kathleen Beller. who is pretty 
enough, but lacking in character. Of 
course, no mercenary in bis tight 
mind would tisk death against such 
great <k1cIs. but Horsley |days Talon 
as jiiec isely the- t\jx* of on-the-ec 
dev il-may-c are |>rotagonist that 
would take* the* pm ness up on bit 
offer. 


Richard Moll as Xusia. in 
Greg Cannom's second 
stage of latex appliance 
makeup, but without the 
contact lenses added for 
demonic effect. Cannom 
worked miracles on a low 
budget and quick shoot. 


Horslev hi mgs a delightful hragga- 
doc io to a role that lx*gs compari¬ 
son—even physically — to Errol 
Flynn's dashing performance as 
Robin IIixmI. With Ins sly gtin and 
well-tuned tenacity, be make's Harri¬ 
son Ford seem even more wcxxlen 
ili.in be is. and glide's tbe action 
through lapse's of helievability and 
logic that have sunk f.u mote ambi¬ 
tious films. 

I lie remainder ol the|dot playsout 
like-a blue|>rint. with I alon leading.! 
rebellion against Cromwell, and 
engaging in a showdown with tbe 
demon Xusia. who literally sheds the 
skin ol his human identity in a nifty 
transformation executed by Greg 
Cannom (sec* sidehai below). Crom¬ 
well's sword light with I alon—both 
men were* wired with high-voltage 
weajxms whic b sparked on contac t — 
is another visual highlight. 

Wisely, 28-year-old director Albeit 
Pyun (pronounced "jK'wn”) (lex'sn’t 
take* tbe material seriously, eschew¬ 
ing EXCAI.IBl’R pretensions for 
good, old-fashioned ac lion, whic h is 
generally well-staged. And even 
when it's not—a major brawl at 
Cromwell's wedding feast quickly 
degenerates into a confusing mass of 
limbs—he redeems it with a compel¬ 
ling. stylistic tone h sue h as Ins slow- 
motion shot of the* opposing force's 
charging amidst a burnt-orange 
backdrop. a telling influence of 
Pyrin's appicnticeship under Japa- 
nese c inematographer Takao Saito 
(KAGEMUSHA). 

While the the*c ast is largely uneven 
and Pyrin's effoits .ire somewhat 
ham|x*red b> mostly unins|>ired pho- 
tograpln and clinjqn editing by Mar¬ 
shall Harvey, there* are outstanding 
jnoduction features. Art director 
George Costello certainly did won- 



Lee Horsley as Talon, the adventurer. 

drous things on bis $*>00,000 budget 
—unbelievably the film was shot 
e ntirely in the Leis Angeles area. 
Roger Hol/bc*rg's sjx*cial wea|x>ns 
.lie inventive crc*ations, particularly 
Talon’s sjiring-loaded triple-headed 
sword. Finally. David Whittaker's 
score- is. in ibis reviewer's opinion, 
one of the fine's! lie-arc! sine e the davs 
of Bernard Herrmann. It isanA-score 
in an otherwise B-inovic. 

Unquestionably. Group I was 
sticking their necks out when, in a 
promotional jxukage for the film, 
they com|)ared it toCLASlIOF THE 
11 FANS. EXC iAI JBURand(iONAN 
HIE BARBARIAN. Excluding 
CONAN (I still haven't seen it). I'm 
willing to Ixi that THE SWORD 
AND EHE SORCERER delivers just 
as much entertainment value as any 
of those Holly wood me-gabiick jiro- 
due lions. Kyle Counts 


! 


Ci 


S L. 




Greg Cannom’s low-budget makeup effects don’t look low-budget 


Greg Cannom provided the spe¬ 
cial makeups seen in THE SWORD 
AND THE SORCEROR Makeup 
Effects Lab of Hollywood contrib¬ 
uted a few "blood and guts" effects 
—like the black witch’s exploding 
heart—and Ve Neill did straight and 
character makeup, as well as burn 
and torture effects under Cannom's 
guidance. 

Cannom. who created and applied 
many of the special effects makeups 
for the THE HOWLING, was able to 
complete only half of the makeup 
effects planned for THE SWORD 
AND THE SORCEROR His four 
stages of progressive makeup for 
demon Xusia are particularly impres¬ 
sive For Xusia's first appearance as 
a "fetus-Buddha." Cannom made 


foam pieces to fit actor Richard 
Moll’s body The pieces were covered 
in fake blood by Effects Lab of Holly¬ 
wood and did not need to be highly 
detailed 

For Xusia’s next appearance. 
Cannom sculpted a series of foam 
appliances that gave Moll an extreme¬ 
ly wrinkled visage. Cannom jokingly 
christened this stage the "LITTLE 
BIG MAN look." referring to Dick 
Smith's classic old age makeup The 
third stage was the re-use again of 
the molds from the "fetus-Buddha.” 
without the blood and with detail 
and coloration visible 

The fourth, and most impressive 
stage is Xusia's transformation from 
a man back into a demon. To achieve 
this startling effect. Cannom used 


air bladders a la THE 
HOWLING, a falsechest 
oozing a mixture of 
Kayro syrup and black 
dye and an elaborate 
fake head which is 
literally torn in half and 
stripped down the sides 
of a dummy like a ba¬ 
nana peel exposing 
a puppet head of Xusia. 

Cannom is unhappy 
with the credit he re¬ 
ceived for his work. 



Cannom 


which comes after a listing of some 
91 stuntpersons and “somewhere 
after all the caterers." he said. 
"After all I went through and how 
cheaply I did the film, who wouldn't 
be disappointed?"—KC 


89 




























REVIEWS 


Harley Cokliss’ directorial debut is exciting, pretty, and dumb 


Battletruck 

A New World Picture* release, §1 min*. 4 12. In 
color, three led In llarles C ok less. Whiten b* Irsin 
Austin. Maries C *iklm and John Beech. Nlors bs 
Michael Abrama. Produced bs l.losd Philips and 
Rob Whilehuuse. C inrmaiographrf. Chris Menses. 
Music bs Resin Peek. Production design. C.ars 
Hansen. Vehicle designer. Kai Hawkins. Art 
direction. Ron Highfirld. ( miumrs. ( Jiraiinr West. 


Hunter. Michael Beck 

Cor lie. Annie McEnroe 

Straker .James Wainwright 

Rusts .John Ralrmberger 

Judd Randolph Powell 


BATTLETRl JCK, a science fic¬ 
tion adventure film from New World 
Pictures, rolls along spectacularly 
through battles and chase scenes, but 
stalls out in its simjdistic sc rijx. 

Director Harley Cokliss—whose 
credits inc lude second unit direc tion 
on THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK 
—shows real promise in direc ting his 
first feature film. There are impres¬ 
sive action sequences, gorgeous loca¬ 
tion photography (the film was shot 
entirely in New Zealand) and an 
atinosjiheric Icjok. but the material, 
despite an interesting premise. isn't 
up to the effort. 

The plot revolves around the con¬ 
flict between a power-hungry robber 
baron. Col. Straker (veteran character 
actor James Wainwright). and a 
reluctant hero-loner. Hunter, played 
by Michael Bee k(THE WARRIORS. 
XANADU). The film is set in a jxist- 
c ivili/ed world, “after the jx*troleum 
wars." Gasoline is all but gone, and 
the scattered bands of war survivors 
scratch out a meager existence in 


primitive communities, which mimic 
the American frontier. Col. Straker 
and a motley gang of followers scour 
the countryside in their fearsome 
armored Battletruck. raiding the 
defenseless settlements for food, 
women and gasoline. 

The action scenes are jiartic ularlv 
well done, and the film cajitures the 
mood cjf a primitive life where survi¬ 
val is a continual struggle, even with¬ 
out the harrassment from Straker’s 
gang. The surjirisingly beautiful 
c inematography details a wild and 
barren landscajx* with jagged, snow- 
covered mountains looming in the 
distance. 

BATTLETRUCK is at its best in 
the action-filled ending, which 
dejiic is the machine of the title*, with 
Cx>l. Straker at the controls, plunging 
over the side of a cliff in slow-motion 
splendor. In an effective touch, the 
soundtrack is suddenly stilled, ex¬ 
cept for the rattles and squeaks of 
heavy metal joints coming apart at 
the scams. 

Elsewhere in the film, however, the 
script sabotages both performances 
and pacing. Lengthy shots of vehicles 
rushing across the countryside seem 
interminable, while early scenes 
establishing the slim characters are 
c lumsy and forced. 

Still. Wainwright manages to lx* 
menacing and dominant as a man 
who will settle for nothing less than 
absolute command. His need to con¬ 
trol driven his raids as much as greed 
for the villagers' scanty stores; the 


ostensible hern, Hunter, is a shadow 
by comparison. Mic hael Bec k, none¬ 
theless, manages to make a rounded 
character out of Hunter with negligi¬ 
ble dialogue. 

Ironically, the instrument of evil, 
the Battletruck itself, is a more fully 
drawn character than Hunter. De¬ 
signer Kai Hawkins built it like a 
massive military transport, itsarmor- 
ed snout resembling an angular 
shark. In fact, so menacing was the 
vehicle, that some New Zealand 
reporters actually hinted that it was 
developed for anti-riot work during 
the recent Springbok (South Afric an) 


rugby lour of New Zealand. The H0- 
foot-long Battletruck—built over a 
strij>jx*d-down c hassis of a Canadian 
Pacific logging truck—roars across 
thecountryside.abetted by a bone-rat¬ 
tling soundtrac k. the jx-rfec t embodi- 
merit of Col. Straker’s lust for jx>wer. 

For all its technical skill the film 
seems wasted on such a clunky and 
sirnjile script. Director Cokliss used 
to make children's films, and BAT¬ 
TLETRUCK will certainly please 
the Saturday matinee-goers. Here’s 
hojnng the adults who accompany 
them like jxetty scenery. 

Charlotte Woltrr 


Hunter tracks the battletruck amid New Zealand s picture-postcard scenery. 



Annaud gives ns more than an 80 , 000 - year-old history lesson 


Quest For Fire 

A 20ih (/ntun-Foi rrlrair. 97 minuirv In tolot. 
70mm and Ikiltn Smro. I>untrd In Jran-Jatqun 
Annaud. Strrmpln. C.rraid Bta«h. ha«rd on ihr 
nutrl bn J. H. Rmnt, Sr. Earculinr prndutrr. 
Mh harl C.rutknff. Piodutrd bn Dmin Hrroui. John 
krmrnn. C o-piodutrrv Jatqurn Hoffmann. Vrra 
Bdmoni Spriial language* irraird bn Anlhonn 
Bulge** B.nI\ language and gcwuir* trralrd bn 
Hrtmond Mnrtiv Munic bn Philqqir Sardr. Cinema- 
lographrt. Claude Agutiim. Edilof. Vnm I angloiv 
Produttion drtign. Brian Morrin, C.un C ummin. 
Aum iale produt m. C laude Nrdjar. C.arlh I human 
Annotiair producer for adion animal urnn, 
Mitharl Moorr. Produclion managrrn. Maiihrn* 
Vibrrt. Sirphm Rrifhrl. Firm annmiaoi dun tor v 
Mallhrn* Vibrtl. Hanoi lira*knell Makeup <omul- 
lam. C.hrinlopher Tucker. Makeup deparimeni 
headn. Sarah Mocuani. Michele Burke. S|iecial dirt m 
makeujM. Stephan Uupuiv John C aglioiie. 


Naoh.Enerrii McCiill 

Amoukar. Ron Perlman 

Cian* .Nameer El Radi 

Ika Rar Hawn C hong 


Among the lesser delights of 
QUEST FOR EIRE is director Jean- 
Jacques Annaud's keen and witty 
observations of the annoying things 
that might have disrupted the course 
of daily life 80.0(H) years ago: 

Three Ulam tribesmen, hoping to 
regain the secret of fire after it has 
been stolen by raiding Neanderthals, 
pause on the savanna and sniff the 
air. They are not alone. A pair of 


saber-tcxithed tigers also pause*, and 
shortly our protagonists are grunting 
and flailing their way up a small tree. 
The tigers patiently wait below, and 
as day becomes night we have to 
laugh. But underlying our laughter 
is an awareness that the situation is. 
to say the least. jx*rilous. 

Suddenly. Annaud's intent be¬ 
comes clear, and the entire future of 
mankind seems to rest on the tree's 
painfully thin branches. QUEST 
FOR FIRE has wit. and even guffaws, 
but its larger tajx*stry involves noth¬ 
ing less than the very survival and 
grow th of humankind. 

In light of movie fluff like ONE 
MILLION YEARS B.C. and CAVE¬ 
MAN. Annaud and screenwriter 
Gerard Brae h are to lx* commended 
for the seriousness of their intent. If 
anything, one might quibble about 
the film’s high incidence of Signifi¬ 
cant Moments. As Noah (Everett 
McGill) and his comrades journey 
across a hostile landsc ajx* in search of 
the fire they need but cannot create, 
tribes at widely divergent stage's of 
development are encountered, a 
jxiint at which anthrojxilogists will 
probably raise eyebrows. Ultimately, 


Noah and his friends discover not 
only the secret of fire, but the exist¬ 
ence of 1111111 ibalism, religious ritual, 
and even the joys of the missionary 
position. They do a lot of learning in 
a short time. 

II QUEST FOR FIRE had no sub¬ 
text, its ejiisodic narrative would lx* a 
bit much. But like other classically- 
constructed odysseys, the film's deej> 
est meanings are on the symbolic 
level. The real quest is for the libera¬ 
tion of knowledge* that fire repre¬ 
sents. With it. theUlamcan turn their 
attentions to the things not directly 
related to the brute necessities of sim¬ 
ple survival. Mastery of fire will allow 
the Ulam to grow. 

Annaud's interest in fire as a liber¬ 
ating element is beautifully repre¬ 
sented by the immediate aftermath of 
the Neanderthal's attack. The warm, 
seemingly secure world of the Ulam 
becomes suddenly chill, wet and 
gray. Noah and the others, no longer 
able to manipulate their environ¬ 
ment. are victimized by it. and they 
must contend with every thing from 
savage bears to quic ksand. 

Claude Agostini's c inc*matograj>hy 
(resplendent in 70inm)rc|x a atedly dis¬ 


plays the frail human figures against 
imjxising natural vistas. Shooting 
lexations in Canada, Kenya and Scot¬ 
land are overpowering without 
being unnecessarily lush. Agostini's 
eye for subtle tonal values—ochre, 
umber and shades of guru—is a joy, 
and his prehistoric landscape, in c on¬ 
cert with Annaud’s artful composi- 
tions and clever use of natural 
sounds, is as convinc ing as one could 
hojx*. 

In the hands of a less sincere direc ¬ 
tor. QUEST FOR FIRE could have 
become a grotesque or trivial j>an- 
tomime. Dialogue is limited to rudi¬ 
mentary words created by consultant 
Anthony Burgess, and Annaud faced 
the jiroblc'in of advancing the narra¬ 
tive and creating believable charac¬ 
ters without becoming broad or cute. 
Sjilendid casting and a sensitive 
attention to nuance provided the 
solution. Everett McGill is marvel¬ 
ous as Noah, a young man alive with 
bravery and c uriosity. His expres¬ 
sions of jihysical courage, as when he 
offers straw* to an enormous wooly 
mammoth, are stirring and truthful 
because they never lose sight of the 
< out inure) on jiagr 92 


90 


















REVIEWS 1 


A, 




Cartoon separates the myth from the monster 


Grendel. Grendel, 
Grendel 

4 Salmi Pmdudiom rrlrwr. II HI. MM mini In color 
and vopr. IlniKiKd and directed b% Alexander Mill. 
S« rrrnplav and lui» In Alexander Sitti Ku*nl mi 
ihr I In John Gardner. Animation director. 
Frank llr Hard Sinp and muxic In Biutr Smrainn. 
Produtcd b» Phillip Adam* and Alexander Siin. 

Featuring ihr *o»ce% of: Peter I xtino* a* Grendel. 
kirilh Mnhrll at ihr Sha|irf. and Arthur Dignant at 
ihr Dragon and Brm*ulf. 


The true monsters of history—and 
its jx>etic predecessor, myth—are 
evil, nightmare things: devils, dino¬ 
saurs and vampires. At least that’s 
what the prologue of this intriguing 
1980 Australian animated feature 
informs us, a narrative spoken by 
direc tor Alexander Stitt over a mon¬ 
tage of woodcuts and illustrations 
which segues into produt tion stillsof 

GRENDEL. GRENDEL. GRENDEL 

The film lake’s up “the most vener¬ 
able monster in myth,” Grendel, 
from the 8th Century Anglo-Saxon 
epic poem in which the monster ter¬ 
rorizes a fledgling kingdom with its 
nightly visits for human dinner, 
unappeased by Cod ot man. until 
subdued by the hero. Beowulf. 

But there’s an incisive twist here. 
Ilie film is based on scholar novelist 
John Gardner’s slim, ingenius 1971 
novel (•rrndrl, which retells the 
mythic tale from the |x>int of view* of 
the monster, reversing the narrative 
form and function, and making 
(irendcl a sympathic creature plagued 
by mankind. 

No animated cartoon could cap¬ 
ture the philosophic al essence of sue h 
a difficult novel as Gardner’s, and 
GRENDEL. GRENDEL GREN¬ 
DEL often fails to balance itself 
between ideas and comic pratfalls— 
in short, between the world of adults 
and children. Technically, the ani¬ 
mation is not very sophisticated; 
there are several problems with jxic - 
mg. which makes the film seem 
longer than its spare 88 minutes. But 
on the whole, it isanadmirable, intel¬ 
ligent effort. It is also often hilarious 
in its dialogue* and characters, and in 
Stitt's visual designs, which vary 


between the abstract and the realistic. 

In the film. Grendel seeks solitude, 
hoping only to kill enough w ild ani¬ 
mals to feed himself and his mother, 
who lives in a pit in his cave and with 
whe >m he carries on one-sided conver¬ 
sations. He is thoughtful and seeks to 
find out his purpose in life. 

Then he meets mankind, in the 
jx’tty. foolish persons of King Hroth- 
gar and his cohorts, who are ftight- 
ened by his huge physical appearance 
and judge him a blood-thirsty demon 
(“The Great Boogy"). But lliothgai 
has other trouble’s—he is trying to 
assemble a kingdom with only nit¬ 
wits as c ompanions. f fe metis l Jnferth, 
a warrior he makes second-in-com¬ 
mand who singlehandely subdues 
the warring, roving hands of other 
men. lliothgai builds a Great Mead 
Hall and Grendel's curiosity is 
piqued. 

The mid-section of the film is piv¬ 
otal. Perhaps "in a dream or on a 
journey,’’ Grendel meets the* Dragon, 
a sage-like creature* who knows all. 
hut doesn't reveal much. He suggests 
that Grendel. who is genuinely hurt 
by man's treatment of him. has been 
put into existence to lx* a needle in 
man’s side*. If man is descended (torn 
Abel, then Giendel is from Cain, and 
his attac ks cm lliothgai and his men 
(who have gradually depleted the* 
foiest's supply of animals) are neces¬ 
sary feu man's progress from savagery 
to civilization. Grendel. says the 
Dragon, is needed togivemena bond¬ 
ing purpose, even to cTeate art. 

The movie adroitly illustrates this 
progress. Religion is born when 
priests show up in the Mead Hall to 
explain Grendel, construct idols, and 
make useless sacrifices to him. Art is 
created in the form of seven lengthy 
vmgs (composed by Bruce Smeaton 
with lyrics by Stitt) which takeover 
the narrative f unc tion of the film and 
by doing so, become an hommagr to 
the origin of all story-telling forms 
(inc hiding movies): the poem Beowulf. 

The epic poem was the first genuine, 
extended narrative in history. Before 
Browulf, history was conveyed 


thtough oral traditions, honed by 
tel lei after teller, represented in this 
film by the* Shajxi. who transmits 
and embellishes the pathetic (froth- 
gai's adventures into song. Both the 
development of art and religion are 
intriguing to the ever watchful, 
questing Grendel, still trying to find 
his pui|x>sc in life. 

Eventually, Beowulf is summoned 
to tic! the kingdom of Grendel. 
Ilrothgar is beset by treacheries and 
|x*tty jealousies that are, once again, 
blamed on the* hapless Grendel's pres¬ 
ence. Brow nil and his band are hu- 
inorously |>ortrayed as sub-humans, 
coarse and threatening, but he does 
the job. The ending is touching: 
Grendel hc*s wounded and blec*ding 
under the stars; he still does not e om- 
prehend his func tion in life, and now 
it is ending. With his plaintive last 
words. “Grendel’s had an acc idem," 
he reaches the complex and heart¬ 
rending stature of a tragic hero. 

Although the* film makesa solemn 
statement on the thematic level, the 
dialogue and visuals are extremely 
funny. Stitt's use* of Australian slang 
and coarse* ripostes are particularly 
humorous in the antics of liiothgar 
and his bumblers, and hi Grendel's 
inconclusive meetings with the 
increasingly enraged, clumsy and 
humiliated Unferth. Also effective is 
the beautifully-precise characteriza¬ 
tion of Grendel hv Peter Ustinov. 

GRENDEL. GRENDEL. GREN¬ 
DEL has few antecedents in concept 
and ambition. It misses the profound 
theoretical design of LiLmx's LE 
PLANET SALVAGE, although 
GRENDEI. |x>ssc*ssesan equally |x*s- 
simistic message with its inherent 
violence. Its overall “look" closely 
resembles YELLOW SUBMARINE, 
although Stitt fails to capture that 
film’s constantly inventive visual 
accomplishment and wit. Despite its 
shortcomings (or perhaps because of 
its technical modesty), GRENDEL. 
GRENDEL. GRENDEL isoneof the 
most thoughtful and delightful ani¬ 
mated films in many years. 

Daind Bartholomew 


Grendel. a character sketch of designer Alexander Stitt s nice monster. Right: Beowulf with Grendel s bloody arm. 


Belial murders Diana Browne. 


A horror for 
those who like 
slummingina 
movie theater 


Basket Case 

An Analxxi* Film* release. I Hi HI mim. In color. 
Written. directed and rdiird In Funk Henenlollrt. 
Produced bt I dicji loin*. Finulitr produtrr*. 
Arnie Brutk and lorn ki\r C mematographer. 
Bmtr Tor bn. Muxic b% C.u* Ru*vi Sound. Pnn 
Thomav Special makeup rflrtl*. lie* in llano and 
John C aglnmr. J». An Dimior. Fred l oim 

Duanr Bradlo hr* in Van llrnirnntk 

Sharon, the rrt epiionixt .Trrri Su*an Smith 

l aw* ihr ha|»p* hookn . . Ron I* Bonnrr 

llotrl manager Rohm Vogrl 


BASKET GASE is an enjoyably 
ratty, no-budget gore picture in 
which most of the blood seems to 
have 1 x 1*11 deleted (cxld, for the* mid¬ 
night-only limited release pattern 
that the film is getting). The movie, 
largely a one-man effort begun in 
1978 by Etank Henenlotter and shot 
on the* cheap in some of the seediest 
place’s in New York, is a bid movie 
and probably was meant to lx*. 

The plot, however, is an interest¬ 
ing variation on SISTERS, m whic h 
the "extra'' twin, a torso, is separated 
from the fully develo|x*d twin (Kevin 
Van Hentenryck). Alas, symbiotic 
brotherly affection basset in,and Van 
Hentenryck saves the little creature 
from a garbage* bag death. Its name is 
Belial (a.k.a. Satan), and now. several 
years after the operation, it is some¬ 
how possessed with fantastic stiength 
even though for all those years. Van 
Hentenryck has been lugging it 
around in a wicker basket. Leaving 
upstate New York, Van Hentenryck 
heads for Manhattan where lie*—or 
rathet they—take* revenge on thedex - 
tors who performed the operation. 

The first sign that the* movie has 
some merit is the- sympathetic por- 
trayal of Belial, which adds to the 
occasionally wacky black humor of 
the movie* and consequently detracts 
fiom most of the suspense! he dircc ten 
has sti ugglcii toac hievt*. The relation¬ 
ship (at time’s telepathic) between the* 
two "brothers" is quite surprisingly 
affec ting. 

However, the two brothers are tor¬ 
tured l>\ Belial's hatred of Van lieu- 
lenryck’s normal form, whic h emerges 
as sexual jealousy and provokc*s vio- 

continuci! on page 92 


91 












Too many violent moments 
spoil the sequel to MAD MAX 


Tiie Road Warrior 

A Mimn Rim rrlrav. ’• M2. *»'» mmv In tolm. Mopr 
and Ifcilb* »lrtm Uirrtlrd In (.n«<r Millrt VVttiim 
h\ (.roiKr Millrt jml Tr»»% lltm niilt Rtun 
tlannani. Prudurrr. Rumi krnnrdt. Ptoduoinn 
tiMwdituitaW. Rinaiutr Indirv* Kjxi.t Prr|miduttintt 
(•Mirdinalor. Jrnm l>n Fioi initiinl directors. 
Rtun lUniMiil. Piliid ( Utlon. ( mrmaintcraphci. 
llran Srmlrt lint umriiun t inrmalographrt. 
VitdtrH Lninr. Sprtial dlnl* makeup attisl. R«»l» 
MiUniin. ( mlumr dniRnri. Noima Mnmrau 
Sprtial prop drMicno main. Mrlmtla Rrnt*n. 
Sjici sal rllrtl tUpmiMit, Jrllir* < liilmd. S|>nul 
Hint* tram. Mmitr tiaeulh. Ilattd Hard*. Sn»r 
Couitlrv Stunt oMitdinatnr. Mat Wpm. tdiimv 
Hat id Sntm. I tm Mrllbuin. Muharl ( hii^tiin. 
Mutii <inn|Mnr«l and tniMlutlrd In Roan Mat. 


Mit 

(•no C aplain 
Mr/ 

Frtal kid 

PapiMRall.. 

Humungus 


Mrl (.ilmin 
Rtuir SfM-iiii 
\rtnun Wrlk 
I mil Mirm 
Mikr PtrUiMi 
kpll NiltMin 


When MAI) MAXojx*nedwithout 
fanfare in 1979. its economical, 
kinetic style immediately established 
(icorgr Millet asoneof thcmi|x>tt.mi 
ac lion dim tors of the Seventies. 

His followup. I III ROAD WAR 
RIOR(a.k.a. MAI)M \X2).lacksthe 
clear-headed intentity that made the 
litst MAI) MAX seem so sttikingly 
original. I his one’s a |>op-e ulture 
Frankenstein monsiei: one London 
critic aptly dcscTilrcd it as “a heavy 
metal SI AR WARS as directed by 
folin Ford.” 

While INI ROAD WARRIOR 
serins lo thaw finm SI AR WARS 
and fiom traditional Westerns, it also 
draws inspiration from a range of 
(jopulat films and lads (especially 
punk fashion and comic IxMiks). I he 
iro|K* th .ii is this narrative* strategy 
will oiiet the audience more chances 
to identify with the film: i he danger is 
that some |H*ople might think the 
film too similar to the fads it copies. 

l he most pungent element from 
MAD MAX letained in the sequel is 
the stor\’s oliession with toitureand 
viole nce, revved up like the c iistom- 
i/ed iliac hint's of the various charac¬ 
ters. Millet was once a diN tor. vvliic h 
may explain his obsessions and lhe 
lack of squeamish ness in lus films: 
hc*’s like a suigeon c tat king jokes at 
an autopsy . 

I lie violence m IhmIi films erupts 
m the lawless backwaters of Atisiia- 


lia. IMF ROAD WARRIOR takes 
place alter an tms|H*e ilie*da|x>e alvpse 
(depicted in a terrific o|N‘iiing mon¬ 
tage of newsrcrls)that wi|x a soutc ivil- 
i/ation. making gasoline the eui- 
renty of survival among those* leli. 
F.veivone’s c ra/v in their pursuit of 
(M-tiol: the lawman Max. the cTa/ed 
bikers and e ustoin c at commandos lie 
luttles lor the gasoline, even his fust 
ally, a snake-handling pilot of a one- 
man helicopter who gens after him 
with a c rossbow. 

I lie belie opitT pilot leads Max to a 
crude oil refinery that the punk - 
stvlctl had guys have enc ire led. Like 
die surrounded stagecoach of yore*, 
this set-up provides the* major con- 
flic t of the* film. ImiiIi physically.and 
hi Max’s dilemma ole lie losing l**t ween 
sell-interest and community (a tee til¬ 
ling theme in the Western, and not. 
me idenially. in the first M AD MAX). 

In some ie*s|x*e is. the latter-dav Bar - 
bariansaiid Vandals who lay siege to 
the refinery even look like* Indians 
with ihc*ii multicolored mohawks 
and ihc'it bows and arrows. I hey 
Ijehave like gladiators, as well, with 
dress and sexual and tribal habits 
drawn from a jxmoplv of myths. Kac h 
e harac te r had just enough c liarae teris- 
tic s to stand out from the jumble*, like 
the STAR WARS characters that 
were planne-tl as "flexible* ac lion toys.” 

l*oi instance, the leader of the*se* 
vetv had guvs, named Humungus, is 
a desert-issue Daith Vader: scarred, 
gravelly voiced. wc*aring only black 
leal her briefs and snaps, and issuing 
commands from behind a black 
metal mask. 

While the* had guvs are a com me - 
mg threat, the* film itself lacks the* 
variation in overall tcin|x> and eon- 
tent that would provide* the emo¬ 
tional e barge* the mythologizing nar¬ 
ration implie s. ( File tc*nsc*st mome nts 
arc* cxlited like a honor film.) All lhe 
myihedogie.il morali/ing simplv 
In ills clown to ”a man's gotta do what 
a man’s gotta do.” 

I nloiinnately, the* film’s list ol 
sadistic "gotta-dos” get monotonous 
after awhile*. Many sugge stive* e It 
meiits (a pretty gill whose* |xiie*niial 



Mad Max (Mel Gibson) and friend 
wander through the barren Australian 
outback, searching for truth, violence 
and an ugly gang of outlaw bikers. 

as Max’s lover is depicted in se veral 
sure stroke's) are thrown away in the* 
tush toward the* genocidal caravan 
that careens through lhe last cock¬ 
eyed c|iiartc*r ol the* film (the gill is 
almost decapitated in a fatal barbed- 
wire strangling). 

Still. Miller draws his share of 
I m N’t ic moments from the r ubble: one 
scene* where an awed child silently 
coni|xirc*s the* blade of the hc*hcopter 
to lus boomerang's razor edge* is 
sii|m*i!>; a late* night, hac kill nrotorc v- 
c le* i.illv in the rain is skillfully clone; 
die use* of siifN'i im|M)sitioii is assured 
throughout: and one hallucinatory 
scc’itc*. fie >111 the helicopter, where the* 
rust-and-atnber landscape of the* 
stoiv races Ircncath Max’s groggy lace* 
like a desert fever-dream, has an 
cffotilc’ss. visionary Ik.iiiiv like* the 
o|x*ning shot of the* jungle-iii-flame 
of APOCALYP.SF NOW 

Millet is skilled at e ai it atuie. c am- 
eja style, and implied violence, and 
he* and his se icenwrilers have a loopv 
sense ol humor. llowc*ver, this film 
has the .hi of .m immoral, perverse 
producers film about it. something 
MAD MAX diet not have. Millet s 
skill and sue c e*ss insure dial someday 
he could make a good ac lion film that 
d(N*s not rely somuc lion bone-c lush¬ 
ing. head-hashing, car-crashing vio¬ 
lence I bis is not that film and I am 
still bothered eac h time I think of the 
litany of '‘innovative” killings that 
Intel this intelligently-made misfire. 

Ra\ Pridr 


The Gyro Captain (left). Humungus and Wez (center) and the Warrior Woman (Virginia Hey), familiar characters. 



QUEST FOR FIRE 

Miiiiiiiimf from |>a<« <ftl 

e harac let’s vulnerability. 

Rae Dawn (ihong is a delight as the 
mud-daubed beauty, Ika, whose* liilx* 
has already mastered fire’s see/et. I ler 
lithe* ImkIv. musical voice ami haunt- 
ingly-expressive eyes represent the 
link between man’s dim )*ast and his 
unlimited future*. It is she* who intro¬ 
duces Noah to laughter and an alter- 
native exprc*ssjon of sexuality: her 
tenderness is charming evidence of 
man's latent ca|xicity for selflessness 
and love. Ile*r |K*ople. the* Ivaka. 
maintain a sophistic atc*el soc iety. 
Their minds and hearts are ready to 
grow, and Chong embodies rlie* 
adventurous spirit tli.u continues to 
motivate us. 

When Noah is allowed to observe 
as an Ivaka liibesman create s file*, his 
face* shows fe*at. joy. astonishment 
and a comprehension of things pre- 
viously undieaml of. It may In* the* 
most mov ing paiitomine* moment in 
film sine e* the* final sequent e*of Chap¬ 
lin's Cl I V I K.H I S If the face of 
Chaplin’s little* tramp displayed the* 
full range of the- human heart and 
mind. Me Coil's Noah suggests the* 
genesis of those* feelings. His eager 
eyes s|M*ak volumes. 

In ilus age of bankability. Q-iat- 
ings and cvnie.il manipulation of 
audicnc e* demographie s. Ql'F.S I 
FOR FIRF is a brave pioject. With¬ 
out heingcoy or false*.itcelehratesour 
wonderful instinct to learn. Because 
this film is about the* growth and 
sin v iv.il of our s| m*c ies. itsdrama is of 
the* puic’si soil. Not simply exhibit at - 
ing cinema. QCFSI FOR HRI is 
InmIi noble and ennobling. 

David J. Ilogan 


BASKET CASE 

loiiliiiurd liiim |Mi(r *11 

Ic’iice.( Fhisis|N)ttiavc‘dinonepailic• 
ulailv grisly ia|N* revenge scene.) At 
the* end of the* film, as IhxIi arc* 
ti.ippid ill (he ll I lines Se|iiaie hotel, 
tliev septate off against c*ac h other (as 
brothers often do), but when Van 
I lentenryc k ace ielc’ii tally plunges out 
the window. Belial attempts to save 
him. l he effort mins to disaster and 
InmIi I.iII totheir deailis. in vvliic hthey 
.lie* finally “rejoined.** I hat the 
movie* achic’vc’s a fleeting sense* ol 
tiage elv here* is ultc*rl\ remaikablc*. 

Despite the sheKldv lee him al film¬ 
making. mi vvliic h some of New 
Yoik's worst at tors cither mug out¬ 
rageous In <>i assume they're makinga 
flat-footed lids Warhol epic. Van 
I lentenryc k manages to put over a 
strong, nuanced |N*rforrriante. c lose*lv 
followed hv Bc veilv lioiiliei as the 
piostitutc who lake s the troublc*d lad 
undc*r her maternal wing. 

Belial’s tle sign (etedited to Kevin 
I laney and John (.aglione. |r.) is si in- 
ilat to Die k Smith’s ImkIv suit * realed 
for William Hurt in AI I I R1 D 
S I A FFS. Which is not surprising 
since Haney, while working lot 
Smith, sculpted the InnIv suit and in 
his spare time also sculpte*el the* suit 
seen in BASKfc I CASK. 

David Harthtdnmru 


92 
























REVIEWS 



Schrader finds 
that moviegoers 
like their horror 
simple-minded 

Cat People 

% I nttrrsal Pmurr* rrlnv. 1 ITJ. I IN mim. In <»lnr jii.I 
INilb« Mrini. Ilnrtlrd In Pjul Vhuiln. StimipLn h» %l*n 
(hrmht. t\nuli%r PiiMlutrr. |rm Htm khnmrt 
I For tomplrir um and «mills mt l£4:VM| 

ItrtM t.jllirr NjsUwm Kinski 

pjul Gallirt Malcolm McDowell 

OMWC \ Jlrs .John Hrjril 

Alkr Prrrin Vnitmr OTooIr 


Dm* complaint I often hc.it about Paul 
Schrader films isihai thev aid lie work of a 
man who uses the medium as a platform 
for |x*rsoual problem-solving. I liat doesn't 
sit ike me as mm h of a c ritic ism. situ edial's 
pree isrlv u'h\ dies arc interesting. St hrader 
is a direc tot who wears his neutoses on his 
sleeve, and o|x a nly admits (hat his seteen- 
plays—laden with hlood. lust and alicna- 
tion—are his way of c hasing the demons 
whit h haw* haunted him since his forma- 
live Dun h Calvinist adolescente. 

As c oimnendablc as that revelation might 
Ik*, this idiosyncratic pursuit hasn't neces¬ 
sarily setset 1 him well in his motion pic - 
lute cait*et. Aside from a few brilliant 
strokes of the pen in IAXI DRIVE R and 

lus astute* ohseiv.uioiis on die* capitalist 
double-c toss of the workingc lass heroes in 
BUT. COLLAR, his films always 


pie-minded horror-fantasy that doesn't 
stii their feelings of guilt. 

If I leard. a fine Americ an ac tor who has 
yet to ret eiw* his due ret (ignition, is meant 
to suggest S« hrader.and < )livei 'sobsession 
wiili Itcna is sujrfxiscd to represent (lit* 
film's emotional t enterpiec e. ihenOimsby 
and St luatlt i fail (ogive weight to support 
the argument. Heard tjunkly establishes 
Oliver’s w insome*, intellec lual side, bin is 
bard-pressed to t lue us mio his skeit liily- 
diawnt liai.it ter’s compulsion, as lie did so 
effortlessly in IIKAlMA I R HEELS 
Kinski, on die other hand, is admirable 
in a nit ky role:sexy.genuine.and mtiigii- 
mglv androgynous. While slit* may not 
steep with menace*, she capture's Irena's 
feline* c|iialitie*s mtely. 

As the original CA I PEOPLE relied 
upon suggestion to convey the ht*roine‘‘s 
transformation into a jianthcr. Schrader 
and ()rmsl>\ have been scvcrly « iiik i/edfor 
show ing w hat l oiirneui left to the imagi¬ 
nation. Psyc hologic a I horror isapi (*cious 
comiiKKlity indeed, hut litcialncss has its 
platt* in the genre* loo. csjx-t i.illv when 
well-executed, which it is licit*. If any¬ 
thing. there's loo httlr show n, panic ulatlv 
(oiisidt iing the(|ii.mtit\ of makeups l oin 
Buiinan apparently created foi the I dm. 
and Kurtnan is not alwavs well-served l>\ 
the lighting of the effet is sc(|iicnt es. 

Where Sthradei's literal-mindedness 
fails is in a tiumlxt of noiiH*ffc*c ts scenes, 
where the dramatit payoff doesn't warrant 
w hat has pret ceded n tlieslow |>annvcr the 
hotel room where* a nude \h Dowell sui- 
ve*ys the iniitilate*d ImmIv of a gill lie pic ked 
upearlier in acemtiaiv: and areprisenf the 
sw imining |xx>l sc cue from the ‘ 12 version, 
w hit h lu re feels |hii lit ularly false and 
contrived, since, unlike the original, 
jealousy has not been a factor in 
Irena's dealings with Annette O'¬ 
Toole's Alic e I he scene isalsoac heat: 
the panthei O’ I dole thinks she 
lieais has lo lx liogus. since ltt*na 
hasn't transformed. 

I could also have done without the 
William (last It* slnx k sc Iiik k the dog 
that leaps out at ( )’ I «x»lc w Idle she is 
jogging, the leg ol Oliver’s dead 
Irienel that swingsdow n on him as he 
apprnac lies his jettv house*, and woist 
ol all: the cmbairassing leuse* and 
misuse td the sc teec lung trolley 
wheels, whit h in Tomiieui's hands 
so undid tincannilv like the* luss of a 
panihc*r: lieie it's just aiiothei c rank- 
ed-U|» Dolli\ sound elft*t t. designed to 
make the audient e jump. 

Sut h t heap shots aside. Sc tiiadc*t 
demonstrates a sure hand in tlit* 
action scenes, three ol width—the 
tiantpiili/ing of tin* McDowell- 
|>ainht*i in the hotel, his later i ipping 
oil Td Be gley Jr.'s arm. and Heard's 
final coiifroni.ilion with (lie t.n. 
whom O'Toole cl i span lies with a 
shotgun—an* ptohahlv (he liesi direc - 
tonal woik lie’s evei done: tense, 
ext mug and |x*ilct tl\ sustained. 

Schrader's a|>|>ioath to relation- 
shipsand his audienc e mav lx* tinged 
with a (as Alic e says of a jammed c ash 
registet hi the 1 1 Inn "you have lo hurt 
it oi it won'I icspoiid attitude, but 
with CA I PKOPLK. he has effec¬ 
tively thaw ii ti|xin Ills idiosyut iac ics 
lo c icatf a film whit h is both absorb- 
mg and exjmssivc of his liotihled 
jxtsonaliiv. K\lc Counts 


seem to tell the wrong tale—and 
ultimately lose sight of their themesdue* 
to Sc hrader\ insistence u|M>neiii|)ha- 
sizing metajdinric sensationalism 
over involving human (‘motion. 

Tht* irony is that while lit* con¬ 
tinues to explore his sjx-t iln j»s\c ho- 
sexual feats in CA 1 PEOPLE, his 

Director Paul Schrader 


Nastassia Kinski as cat-woman Irena Gallier. 


M 


it ailot t mis ujMlateof the HM2 J.it cjues 
Tourneur B-t lassie. another wtitei — 
Alan Otmsbv—jjrovided the narra¬ 
tive flame work that heljx-d Schra- 
d(*i s magnilit ent obsessions woik hi 
harmony with the movie's inten¬ 
tions. Obvious and self-indulgent 
though ii m.iv be,< A I Pi t >PI .1 is.i 
lx>ld. stylish and disturbing film, as 
haunting as it is visually eloquent. 

< )nnsbv s sc ii|)t serins tailoi-madt* 
lot Schrader, who uses tht* fantasy 
elements of the story (loosely based on 
the original hv DeWitt BcnlcriDasa 
soil of jisythic siifety valve totom- 
ment on our socictv's gtxllt*ss and 
my tliless t ulum ()unshv s |)rotago¬ 
nist. ()livei Yates (John I It aitl). a /tx» 
t uraioi who j)ieft*is animals to jx*o- 
pie. senses a divine presence in Iiena 
(ialliei (Nastassia Kinski), a young 
woman who has it*cenilv arrived in 
New Oi (t ails foi a leimion with her 
long-lost minister hiother (Malcolm 
Me Dowell). 

Like lltaid. Schrader is diawn to 
Kinski's sti.mge. amistNial c liai.it - 
t(*i. and lx>th areetjuallv intrigued hv 
(lit* compromises she will have to 
make as a result of disc overing hei 
true n.ittut*: she is the last of an 
ant ient i.iteol jx ople whoiraiisfoim 
into malevolent lc*o|>;uds when ton- 
siimetl hv angei. jealousy oi “cor¬ 
rupt” sexual jussioiis. 

If either version of CA I PEOPLE 
is going to work foi you. you'vegot to 
jilayfullv accept its piemise. Thank¬ 
fully. Onrrsby drops the sick k jisvt lu- 


att it angle of iheoriginal. and wisely 
avoids falling Lit k on voodoo and 
othei |irefabricated explanations lot 
the evolution of the Cat People. ( The 
lieautifully stylized jirologue could 
have served the pur|w»sc*. but tint* to 
Srluader*s t lianges. it is both iik om- 
prehensihle and su|M*rfluous.) 

His most notable addition lo the 
plotline is the charac ter of Kinski's 
clergyman brother, which brings an 
iik estous dimension to the yarn: at at 
man and woman tail make love 
safely. hut am one else is in danger of 
Irecoining j mis t-coital dessert, sinte 
killing is the only way thev t an let urn 
to human form. Oimshy side-stt|»s 
any moralizing on the controveisial 
issue of iiitest. prc*sc*nting it only as a 
logit al solution to Me Dowell's dec id- 
edlv sat religious yearnings. 

riiematic ally. CA I PEOPLE 
deals with the El endian thesis that it a 
society is huilt on the family unit, 
there is a resulting amount of if|m*ssed 
sexual energy. And what isicpiesscd. 
Onnshv Sc liiadei hint, usually finds 
iis release*—often hi a violent form. 

I bus.tht*“monster"of metamoi|iho- 
sis bet tunes a double-edged borror: 
the unhealthy repression ol sexual 
desiics and iik est. w nil sex and incest 
die two gieai conscious i.iIxnis ol 
Vmerican t ulitire. In ex.iuiiniug sut h 
binning toj»ic s. it mav lx- that ()rms- 
bv St hrader have immediatelv pul 
then audie nce* at aim s length ( A I 
PEOPLEl's jxx»i boxoffice reception 
indicates that moviegtxTs ptefet sitn- 




93 














LETTERS 



HE’S MAD AS HELL AND 
NOT GOING TO TAKE 
SCHRADER'S CAT PEOPLE 

I found iIh* comments by director 
Paul Schrader concerning CA T 
PEOPLE. [12:4:28) to Ik* extremely 
annoying. First, he states that his ver¬ 
sion is not a “remake." That’s like 
saying that a < hair is not at hair. Next, 
he states that the film isn't a horror 
film. Thai’s the same rationalization 
used by William Friedkin about 
THE EXORCIST, as if making a 
genre film were something to be 
ashamed of. Let’srall a spade a spade, 
with no “artsy’’ pretensions. Al¬ 
though there are some very nice 
things in the new CAT PEOPLE, it’s 
basically a sexed-up version of the 
original Val I a-wion classic, in which 
Schrader and screenwriter Alan 
Ormsby get a chant e to work out their 
neuroses and sexual obsessions on¬ 
screen. 

Schrader and Ormsby also belittled 
the source material, calling Lewton’s 
CAT PEOPLE “a very good B-mo¬ 
vie." It’s just another example of the 
condense ending attitude they have 
towards the horror genre. Alan Orms¬ 
by’s past credits aside. 

But perhaps what irritated me even 
more was Schrader’s statement that 
"horror films are dying." when they 
have never been morealive. If Univer¬ 
sal really agreed with Schrader. I 
doubt they would have taken out 
huge ads in film magazines (includ¬ 
ing this one) announcing all the new 
honor films they’ve backed. If horror 
films ever do die out—which I 
seriously doubt, since they’ve been 
with us since the cinema's incep¬ 
tion—it will be because pseudo-intel¬ 
lectual. pretentious bores like Paul 
Schrader are allowed to make them— 
and then to claim that they didn't. 

Bruce Hallenbeck 
Valatie. New York 

Flack over a review 

BY CONAN’S “FLACK” 

Perhaps I have a ccazed, unrealistic 
notion of critical impartiality, but I 


take serious exception to your pub¬ 
lishing Paul M. Sammon’sgushy ode 
to CONAN THE BARBARIAN 
[12:4:49]. At last count. Sammon has 
already churned out two cover arti¬ 
cle's and several shorter preliminary 
articles on that same movie in your 
magazine. Bv your own admission in 
a previous editorial (12:2 12:3:3). 
Sammon is on the Universal payroll, 
"embarked on a new career as public - 
ity flack for the production .. . trum¬ 
peting the film’s virtue's ...’’ 

By all means. Mr. Sammon—ig¬ 
nore conflict of interest and blow the 
hell out of that horn, hut must readers 
expecting some semblance of critic al 
objec tivity Ik* subjected to your one- 
note symphony? So muc h for CFQ’s 
self-vaunted critical and journalistic 
integrity. You might just as well 
reprint the hyperac live bilge cranked 
out by studio flac ks which you sancti¬ 
moniously accuse other magazines of 
doing. I);ui Scheffer 

Pacific Palisades, California 

Your subscription ad last issue stated: 
"You’ll never confuse us with a press 
kit." Are you joking? 

Your writer gets a junket to Spain 
for C:ONAN THE BARBARIAN. 
The distributor hired him to puff the 


pic at SF conventions. He write's a 
double issue on the film. Now he 
writes a review of CONAN. A classic 
folks. Great stuff, you’ll love it. 

Sorry people, I can’t handle a mag- 
azine that hires a reviewer who is 
employed to hype* the film he is 
reviewing. Nobody I talked to who 
saw the preview* had any enthusiasm 
for the film. Bad acting, dumb script. 
I only heard gocKf things for the sets 
and costumes, and I don’t lay out 
$f>.(M) to see sets and costumes. 

Emily Scanlan 
San Francisco, California 

Exc use me, hut have you folks ever 
heard of conflict of interest? I low 
could you even consider running a 
review on CONAN written by Paul 
Sammon, whom you described as a 
"publicity flack for the production, 
in the employ of distributor Univer¬ 
sal Pic lures." 

Small wonder he judged it. "one of 
the finest fantasy films ever, an 
instant classic ..." Did you really 
believe Sammon could approach 
CONAN objec tively? Why not just 
let Del^iurentiis critique the filmand 
to hell with it? 

Pat Cannon 
Chicago, Illinois 


Of course we thought Paul Sammon 
would approac h his rnnew of COX AN 
objectively—we wouldn’t have as¬ 
signed it to him otherwise. Perhaps a 
brief history of Sammon's involve¬ 
ment will silence all questions. 

John Milius’office contacted us in 
November, 1980, and offered to let the 
magazine send a reporter to Spain — 
at our expense—to coirr the filming 
of CONAN. We offered the assign¬ 
ment to a number of writers; Sam¬ 
mon accepted shortly thereafter. Ills 
assot lation with Vmversal—talking 
about the film at SF and fantasy con¬ 
tentions—came months later, fol¬ 
lowing the publication of his initial 
feature story on ('.ONAN, whit It 
appeared in our I’ol II No ? issue 
(September, 1981). We had no objec¬ 
tion to Sammon’s convention speei li¬ 
es, since we felt they could do nothing 
to lessen his effectiveness as a repor¬ 
ter. In our recent double issue we 
mentioned Ins ties to Universal to 
assure our competition-going readers 
we weren’t trying to hide anything. 

And we’re not. Sammon ha\ been a 
regular contributor to our pages since 
1976, and has never been timid at 
throwing critical brickbats. CONAN 
desened praise, in our opinion, as 
well as his. 


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94 















































LETTERS 


Sometimes crystal 

BALLS ARE GLASS 

The blurb on E.T. in your May-June 
issue (12:1:8) was entirely uncalled 
lor. How is it that Steven Spielberg 
(who has delivered first-rate enter¬ 
tainment far more consistantly than 
the lesser talents your magazine 
champions) earns such cynical and 
vicious s|K*( ulation on a movie that 
bad yet to lx* released? You stated 
that because Universal is owning 
E.T. THE EXTRATERRESTRIAL 
in 1,300 theaters, the film is a dog. 
Why did CONAN THE BARBAR 
IAN, whic h opened in 1,300 theaters 
and has sinc e gone to 1.000, escape 
identical speculation? Possibly be¬ 
cause your magazine was given so 
much advanc e materials for your sjx*- 
c ial double issue? It is a pity that the 
cjuality of your magazine’s observa¬ 
tions don't match the cjuality of the* 
|K»|x*r they’re printed on. For the 
record. I'm betting that E.T. will be 
one of the years finest films. 

B. Bird 
Fairfax California 

And so it is. Our speculations on E. T. 
have caused us more than a little 
embarrassment. They were based on 
off-the-record mterivews with sources 
close to the production. This informa¬ 
tion—the best that could be obtained 
under Spielberg's news blackout — 
was obviously inadequate to form an 


accurate assessment. Predicting the 
future is a risky business. 

DON’T HOLD AN YTHING 
BACK! WHET ME GOOD! 

On numerous occasions in letters 
columns past. I've noticed fans 
expressing discontent with your jxd- 
icy of revealing plot summaries or 
details in advance of a films' release, 
thereby s|x>iling the element of "sm- 
prise." I. foi one, do not understand 
this attitude, which seems to attach 
undue importance to the ignorance 
of the audienc e at large. I he tin ill of 
watching a spectacle on screen isn't 
cjuite the same as talking about it 
beforehand, and I never minded my 
appetite being whetted by being 
tipfxxl on what to expec t next. 

Please keep us as well infoimed as 
we can lx* about works in progress, 
and don't feel you are ever letting the 
“cat out of the bag"—only the film 
itself can do that. The only surprise 
that’s really worth worrying about, 
and one we can all feel comfoi table 
with, is whether a film will lx- any 
good or not. Greg Fm-t 

Chic ago. Illinois 

DON’T PEEK AT SNEAKS 

I must comment on your brief notice 
alxnit the mixed reactions to sneak 
previews of BLADE RUNNER 
[12:1:11]. Funny. I always thought 


the purpose of a sneak preview was to 
see what c hanges needed to lx* made, 
and further editing done, before a 
film was released. So what’s the big 
deal? 

And as to Hanison Ford, why 
shouldn't w*e accept him in this role? 
I'm sure we are well aware that this is 
not R AIDERS OF TH E LAST ARK. 
and can learn to live with it. 

Baibaia E. Bray ton 
Denver, Colorado 

We did not intend that our brief article 
be considered a rei'icw of BLADE 
Hl ’XXEli — we'll be doing that next 
issue. It’s our policy not to remeiv such 
works-m-progress, unless clearly 
identified as sutfi. However, when- 
ever a film of BI~4l)E RUNNER's 
importance is shown to the public 
prior to final editing, we think most 
readers are anxious to know about it, 
and to learn what the crowd's reai- 
lions were. 

What HAPPENED TO... 

Whatever hap|x*ned to the double* 
issue on STAR I REK—THE MO¬ 
TION PICTURE you announced 
kick in Vol 10 No I? In your letters 
page in Vol 10 No 2. you said it would 
lx* out in December. I assumed you 
meant December. 1980. I was very 
nine h looking forward to that double 
Jon E. Pryor 
Panama City, Florida 


IVe've been looking forward to print¬ 
ing the STAR TREK—TMP double 
issue as much as you'ir anticipated 
reading it. We feel interest in the 
troubled production has not waned in 
the intervening years, and are still 
committed to the issue. However, 
numerous delays, coupled with the 
sheer scope of the project, make it 
imftossible to gwe an exait publica¬ 
tion date. Fortunately, our coverage of 
the sequel (see page *>()) is a bit more 
timely. 

More on film ratings 

Unlike David Balsotn. whose letter 
you printed last issue [ 12:1:31]. I am 
grateful for the "film ratings'' page 
you've recently instanc'd. In my opin¬ 
ion. your reviews don’t giveaway t<xi 
much of the plot and your cynical crit¬ 
ics arc* usually very credible in liais¬ 
ing a film, therefore I look forward to 
viewing a film that is given a good eval¬ 
uation by any of your writers. 

Ray E. Boyce. Jr. 

Clem son. South Carolina 

Correction 

Cist issue*, we iuc orrectly referred to a 
flawed effects shot from MEGA¬ 
FORCE as the responsibility of the 
Introvision front-projection process. 
In fact, the sequence* should have 
been c redded to/oran Perish and bis 
''/optic ” process. Weregret theerror. 


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Are you afflicted? 

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smearing the type and telltale signs of 
glass rings on the front cover? 

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SUsDc^nUnnEn 

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nunnEn Fan Club 

Join now and as a Charter Member you get the 
special club kit 

• Big 8 x 10 Harrison Ford Color Photo 
■ Spinner drivers license 

• glossary of terms and definitions 

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Here is the Collector’s Edition you will treasure 
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Many exclusive color photos give you the whole, exciting 
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PlilS, you'll enjoy the highlights of 

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95 

































HARRISON FORD IS THE 


SiriDE nUnncn 


JERRY PERENCHIO and BUD YORKIN PRESENT 
A MICHAEL DEELEY-RIDLEY SCOTT PRODUCTION 
starring HARRISON FORD 

in BLADE RUNNER • with RUTGER HAUER SEAN YOUNG 
EDWARD JAMES OLMOS screenplavby HAMPTON FANCHER and DAVID PEOPLES 
executive producers BRIAN KELLY and HAMPTON FANCHER visual effects by DOUGLAS TRUMBULL 
ORIGINAL MUSIC COMPOSED BY VANG ELIS PRODUCEDBY MICHAEL DEELEY DIRECTEDBY RIDLEY SCOTT 
ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK ALBUM AVAILABLE ON POLYDOR RECORDS 


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